Here are some psychologically proven tips you can apply to minimize the impact of stress and surf the waves that may come upon you in the new year.
Four Tips to Ride Through the Waves of Stress
1. Make friends with your stress
Kelly McGonigal a Health Psychologist at Stanford University and a thought leader in this topic shares that people who view stress as a positive experience are less stressed out, less anxious and more confident than those who viewed stress negatively. The next time you are stressed, think of how the experience of stress is providing your body with more energy and preparing you well for the challenge at hand.
2. Look at the glass half-full
People who have a positive outlook of life, even during times of difficulty or stressful situations experience better health and are able to bounce back from negative situations much quicker than those see things negatively. When going through a stressful situation think of the areas in the situation which are helping you, working well for you and could be of benefit to you.
3. Prioritize exercise into your routines
At the University of Basel, the fitness levels and ability to cope with stress of 200 employees were examined. It was found that workers who had high fitness levels were better able to cope with stress and had much lower levels of factors contributing to heart disease than those who had medium or low fitness levels. Take steps to include exercise into your daily routine and improve on your fitness level by increasing your intensity level when playing sports or exercising.
4. Practice mindfulness
Mindfulness means to stay present to what is happening in the moment without judgement. Mindfulness is taught as a stress reduction technique in many hospitals, schools and organisations around the world including companies like Google GOOGL -0.23% and Facebook FB -0.81%. Being present to one’s emotions, thoughts and experiences during stressful time have been found to greatly reduce stress levels.
At Intel participants reported a two-point decrease (on a scale of one to 10) in stress and feeling overwhelmed when they completed a mindfulness program.
The next time you’re stressed, rather than "fixing" it take a few minutes to become aware of the sensations in your body, the thoughts running through your head and the emotions you feel non-judgementally.
Stress is inevitable and we will face stressors in our life whether it is at work, in our relationships or with our health. It's not something we can avoid but it is something we can manage and surf the waves in 2018!
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