It can be hard to not be stressed out in today's world given all our responsibilities. Did you know that stress can impact your physical health? People who live stressful lives tend to be more vulnerable to headaches, backaches and heart disease. How often you get sick or experience unpleasant physical symptoms can be a sign of how stressed out you’ve been. Don’t lose hope if you’ve had your fair share of stress and physical discomfort over the past few months. There are some simple steps you can take today to reduce stress.
Participating in activities we enjoy can reduce stress and make us happier. Let’s do a quick activity. Take a few seconds to think about the activities you like to do when you’re not at work or when you have free time. These activities will be your guide to living a less stressed and happier life. Take a couple of seconds to write down or make a list in your smartphone, the activities so that you can look at them and choose one to do when you feel stressed out. Pick one activity from your list that you can do right now even if it’s only for a couple of minutes. You’ll want to make a commitment to yourself to do something every week even if it’s only for a few minutes. As you get in the habit of doing one of your activities each week, you may choose to devote more time each week to completing activities that reduce your stress. Here’s a helpful tip: place your list somewhere you can see it or use the calendar on your smartphone to schedule time each week to complete a stress reducing activity. Keeping your list visible or having it scheduled into your phone will help remind you to take action every week. Life can be stressful but you have the power to choose to do something every week that will make you feel better and less stressed.
Christina is a Psychotherapist in private practice in Oakland California.