Welcome to “How to Relieve Stress”. This is Day 4 of our free stress management course.
We are going to provide you with several tips that you can use to diffuse that ‘moment of stress’, which we all suffer from at times.
Whilst these are designed to reduce those moments of immediate pressure, they are unlikely to deal with any longer term issues. If you are looking for a stress management system, then you might find Day 5 of this course “Stress Management Strategies” more beneficial (link at the bottom of this page).
Of course, we are not medically trained. If you are suffering from stress that you can’t deal with, or are in any doubt about how to relieve stress in your case, then you should refer to a professionally qualified doctor or counselor for help.
The ideas we have listed below are not in order of preference. Some of these ideas will work for some people, whilst other ideas will work for others. Choose the one(s) which fit with your lifestyle.
Have an open mind when going through these ideas. Some tips you might have heard about before and some of these you might actually think are a bit of a ‘waste of time’. They’re not.
Stress can be as simple as ‘losing control’ for a short moment in time, or a gradual build-up over a longer period of time. The ideas presented in this module are designed for you to take back control (however briefly). Therefore, it is worth trying even the most simplest of idea. If you try 3 or 4 of these then that can help with a lot of stress relief.
Stress Clouds Your Thinking
When we are suffering from stress (whatever is causing it), we are not able to think straight. This causes more stress and it’s usually a downward spiral.
Therefore, we need to break this cycle. Only once we’ve broken the cycle can we then focus our minds on the real problem which is causing the stress.
As mentioned above, Day 5 of this course contains stress management strategies. However, depending on your situation you might not be ready for those yet (because you’re too stressed and need an ‘immediate fix’).
What we have in this module might seem too basic for many people. We even predict that some people are going to roll their eyes and say “ohh no, not THAT”. However, we consider these quick tips essential to break the cycle of stress.
YOU Need To Take Responsibility
Most often our stress is brought on because we don’t feel in control. So start to take control…….
Even if it’s just asking others for help, you have to take that first step. The great thing about taking control, of any situation, is that it actually starts to reduce the stress that you are suffering from. Even if that’s just a little bit of relief, it’s a start.
Problems at work causing you stress? Then it’s you that’s going to have to do what you can to resolve the work-issue, or look for another job.
Problems with finances causing you stress? Then it’s you that’s going to have reduce your outgoings, or look for more work, or find another job that pays more money.
Problems with exams causing you stress? Then it’s you that’s going to have to improve your time-management, or goal-setting, or increase your motivation to work smarter and learn more.
Problems in relationships causing you stress? Then it’s you that’s going to have to resolve the issues with the other person (or people). You have to make that first step…. or dissolve the relationship(s) if they are not contributing to your life.
All of the above problems can only be resolved with a clear head. And that is why we’ve suggested the following ‘stepping stones’ in this module, to give you respite from the stress. This will enable you to focus on the problem and take that ‘next step’.
Remember, even if it’s just asking others for help, you have to take that first step. There will be something in the following tips which will help.
How to Relieve Stress
Change Your Mindset
Your mindset is crucial when it comes to stress.
In the following video, Roger Reece talks about Managing the INTERNAL Sources of your stress.
The interesting key-point of this video: Your brain distorts reality.
Small Changes To Be Introduced To Change Your Mindset
Stress often comes from our own negative view of the world. No matter how bad you think your life is, there are millions of people worse off than you… and we did say MILLIONS of people worse off then you, because there are!!
Don’t put yourself down…. EVER!!
You DO have something to offer the world. We will prove this to you later on in this module.
Never Give Up On Anything
Everything is possible. Everyone who has ultimately seen success has, at some stage, hit a road-block or wanted to give up. As soon as you feel like giving up then that is the first step to actually giving up – so don’t even think it.
However, course corrections are needed in life – There is a difference!!!
Mistakes Are Inevitable
Understand that we are born to make mistakes. Everyone makes mistakes and the more successful you are the more mistakes you are likely to have made along the way.
Do not get upset with yourself, OR OTHERS, when mistakes are made. See it as a good thing and that you have ‘learnt a lesson’ which you can use to your advantage in the future.
Don’t Watch The News
When you focus on bad news, you will automatically start to see bad news everywhere….. including in YOUR life – and that will just drag you down even further. The news doesn’t have anything good to offer you. SO SWITCH IT OFF !!!
Use The Right Words
Don’t use the word “problem” use the word “challenge”.
We are designed as ‘resolution machines’. All of us are ‘up for a challenge’. Also, challenges are a chance for you to ‘grow’ as a person and to ‘learn a lesson’.
The word ‘problem’ just has the word ‘barrier’ associated with it (and to get over a barrier is ‘hard work’).
Okay, that’s the end on the ‘Thinking’ bit. But hopefully it just adds a bit of perspective to whatever is causing you stress. Of course just reading those tips will change NOTHING in reality. However, they will start to make you think differently on a subconscious level about your life.
Get Angry……. And Throw It Away
In your moment of stress, grab a piece of paper and write down as quickly as possible all the things that are currently making you stressed or angry. Do this really fast and without stopping.
When you’ve done that, screw up the paper, or tear it to pieces, and throw the paper in the bin……
That is now where your problems are – IN THE BIN!!
Now take a couple of minutes to visualize yourself throwing those problems awa,y time and time again.
Remember, the stress is now out of your head and in the bin!!!
Buy Some Tropical Fish
Tropical fish are not only beautiful to look at but they can have a great calming effect as you watch them glide through the water.
If tropical fish seem like too much effort to look after, then consider buying some goldfish instead. If you can’t do that, then watch the video below.
(The view does change by the way, you’re not watching the same fish all the time)
Smile As Wide As You Can
Is impossible to feel angry whilst you are smiling. Look in the mirror now and smile as wide as you can. Do it and hold the smile for 5 seconds. Now nod your head and say “yes”. Smile again. The mere act of doing this releases chemicals from the brain which can start to relax you.
Better still, look in that same mirror and laugh at the fact that we are getting you to do something so stupid….. are we for real??? Just laugh at us then!!!
Count Slowly And Breathe
Yes, yes, this has been spoken about for decades. But do you know why people say you should do this?
BECAUSE IT WORKS !!!!!
When faced with a stressful situation, make sure you are in a safe environment and then:
- Close your eyes (if it’s safe to do so).
- Drop you shoulders…no we mean further than that… right down!!
- Take a deep breath in whilst counting slowly (in your head), from 5 to 1.
- Hold the breath for 5 seconds.
- Slowly let the breath out whilst counting slowly (in your head), from 5 to 1.
- Repeat this breathing cycle 10 times.
- And then open your eyes.
If you’d rather follow a video, then try the following.
Breathing Relaxation Exercise
By taking control of your breathing it leads to a physical reaction in your body which automatically relaxes you. Not convinced? Then take a look at this article: Just 25 minutes mindfulness meditation can significantly alleviate stress (opens in a new window).
IT WORKS !!!!!
Write Your Positive Story
Take the next 15 minutes to write down all of the good things that’s good about your life at the moment. Just focus on the good things. Whatever age you are, you have survived in life up until this point (many people don’t !!) – so THAT’S a good thing.
If you can’t think of anything good about your life at the moment, try something from your past.
For example :
- Are you having relationship problems, which is currently causing you stress?
- Well you managed to get into a relationship in the first place. That was good.
- Write about how good that situation was ‘back then’.
- Are you having issues with your weight which is causing you stress?
- Have you always had weight problems?
- If not, then write about how good it was when you were slimmer.
- Were you involved in sports at school? Write about those days.
- Do you having problems at work which is causing you stress?
- Well you did manage to secure the job in the first place. That was good.
- Write about how good you felt when you first got the job.
- What did you spend your first pay check on?
- How good did that feel?
- Are you struggling financially which is causing you stress?
- Write down all of the things that you HAVE managed to purchase over the years (it’s going to be a long list).
- What was your most favorite purchase?
- Write down the details of that purchase and how great did it make you feel?
- If you had the money, what would you buy next?
- Write down the details of that item (color, size, cost).
“But I don’t have time to do all this !!!”
We highly recommend that you do it. Start to feel gratitude for what you do have now (or have had in the past). It’s designed to alter your mindset about how you feel about your life – it WILL make a difference.
Exercise For Stress Relief
What do you do as soon as you get home, after a stressful day at work?
“I just crash out in front of the TV”
Does that actually get rid of your stress and tension?
“NO – I just mull over the problems all night”
TIP: A Good work-out will always burn off stress.
Men or women can do the following Jillian Michael’s 30 Day Shred: Level 1 (You don’t need the weights).
NB. Do NOT do these exercises if you are not used to exercising. Check with your doctor if in ANY doubt.
Can’t do a work-out? Then go for a brisk walk instead. Either way, just burn off that stress.
Video Relaxation Tips
We’ll now continue with some simple stress-relieving videos. We don’t expect you to do all of them every time you spill a carton of milk. Some will resonate with you more than others.
The next time you have that horrible email to respond to, just do one of the following exercises first, THEN see how you feel about that same email in you inbox.
How To Calm Down In 10 Seconds (Fast Relaxation Trick To Stop Anxiety And Stress)
How To Instantly Relieve Stress & Increase Happy Hormones
You might think that the above is a ridiculous technique…. but just you try it the next time you’re feeling stressed.
Reduce Your Neck & Shoulder Tension
Stress can often originate from neck and shoulder tension. In today’s modern lifestyle, it is common for people to get neck and shoulder tension, from sitting at computers all day. This causes physical stress and can make you less tolerant when dealing with others.
Yoga Moves To Relieve Tension In The Neck & Shoulders
Or maybe you just would like to get away from it all for a while. Try these beach relaxation videos.
Didn’t like our suggestions? Try the following stress relieving ideas instead then….
Stress Management Strategies: Ways To Unwind
“But you just don’t understand my problem. Doing those stupid exercises is never going to resolve my issues.”
We can’t possibly resolve the world’s problems in a short article. And whatever is causing your stress is not likely to go away overnight, we understand that.
However, whatever the cause of your stress, you need to think with a clear head and you can’t do that if you are suffering from stress (physical or emotional).
As we’ve said previously, it has to be YOU that takes the first steps. Stress comes about when we feel as though we are not in control of a situation.
Take responsibility – that gives you some control. As soon as you feel as though you have some control, that leads to a reduction in stress. It really is as simple as that.
Again, we filly appreciate that there are going to be some people reading this saying “Ohhhh yeah, nothing new here. I’ve seen all these before. None of them work”.
They only “Don’t work” for those who don’t try them.
As we said in our introduction, this is about taking back control of ‘those stressful moments’. Anyone with longer term stress, really needs to get to the root of their problem (and that could mean seeking the help of a professional). The information in this free stress management course is for informational purposes only. It is not designed to take the place of proper medical supervision.
We hope that you benefit from our module on how to relieve stress. Please help us spread the word, using the social links below.
IMAGE CREDITS: Angry Female Yelling (stockimages) / Doctor Pointing Forward (imagerymajestic) / Young Irritated Executive (imagerymajestic) / Man relaxing on couch (graur razvan ionut) all at freedigitalphotos.net