Nadiyah Suleiman, Page Editor
With finals and the holiday’s coming up, this time of the year can be especially stressful. This November 4 marks the 17th National Stress Awareness Day. This day emphasizes the importance of understanding what stress is and how you can effectively manage tension and strain in your everyday life. Below are some helpful tips to help you handle your stress.
Ask yourself realistic questions
Stress can often stem from worry. Worrying about stressful situations only adds to the problem and does not get any results. Step back and ask yourself, “What can I do to improve this situation.” If you cannot do anything, practice letting it go and moving on; if you can do something, there is no need to worry because you have a solution. Just be honest with yourself.
Learn what steps you can take to effectively manage your time. Set deadlines for things you want to accomplish and stick to them. Focus on one thing at a time and try not to multi-task; this will improve your concentration on tasks as well. Don’t forget to schedule in some time for relaxing.
Taking time out of your day to get a workout in can be beneficial not only to your health but also reduces tension in the body. The important thing to remember is to find what works for you. There are several exercising options available to try and explore. Whether you like yoga, crossfit, or running it’s important to stay active.
Put away the chips and sodas, and grab an apple or celery sticks. Foods high in sugar or carbs have the potential to make you feel tired and sluggish, adding more stress to your day. Try to go for more fruits and vegetables and avoid over processed food. Also, it is important to drink plenty of water and do not skip meals.
Get a good night’s sleep. Unhealthy sleep patterns can cause you to feel tired throughout the day that can turn the easiest of tasks into a chore. To relieve stress, set time aside to get a full night’s rest and try to consistently get up at the same time every morning. For tips on improving your sleep visit http://healthysleep.med.harvard.edu/healthy/getting/overcoming/tips.
Meditation can improve your sleep patterns, increase defense in your immune system, and can sharpen your focus. Even if you have never tried meditation before, sitting down for five minutes to either reflect on how your day is going or let your mind go blank. This can help you unwind and relax after a stressful day.
Learn to say No
Part of being stressed is taking on too many obligations and responsibilities. When someone asks you to take on something else, whether it be for a class, job or extra curricular activity – just say no. Spreading yourself too thin can cause you to be overworked and stressed.
Take time for yourself
Don’t forget to take time out of your day to do something you want to do. It can be anything you want, just as long as it makes you happy. Read a book, play a video game or take a walk. Whatever hobby or activity you enjoy – do that.
Not knowing what you have to do or what deadline is coming up can cause unnecessary worry. Keep a detailed planner and update it constantly. Make to-do-lists and hold yourself accountable for checking each item off the list. This can help you feel prepared and alleviate some of the stress you may feel.
Embrace your mistakes
Mistakes are going to happen. Life gets hectic and things go wrong. You can’t let your mistakes drag you down and stress you out. Worrying about something that’s happened in the past does not help you in the future. Learn from your mistake and then let it go. Dwelling on things will only make you more stressed out, forgive yourself and move on.
Life is hard and can get extremely busy, but with the proper awareness and right practices life doesn’t have to be overwhelming. Stress is a part of life, but it doesn’t have to control you. Just remember you have the power to change your outlook and eventually it will get better.