Loss of appetite? Mood swings? Lack of motivation to do anything? the sky seems gloomy? Punctured wheel? Rising fuel prices? Is something nagging you despite being on top of your game in most aspects of life?
Stress can get to the best of us even when we are doing everything right. We are humans and we face ups and downs in life. Not every day may be the greatest day. Be it an absent maid when we have planned a party or be it a boss who tortures employees with unrealistic targets, it can certainly be stressful. Certain things are out of our hands and we can’t do anything about it. When you can’t do anything about a situation that is out of your hand, why worry in the first place? Seems logical, right?! But it is difficult to realize it emotionally in real situations. How does stress affect us physiologically and psychologically? If we talk about fitness, stress can slow down muscle growth under chronic situations and shoot up your body fat levels to an extent that it can increase the risk of cardiovascular diseases.
But, for every problem, there is a solution. In some cases, solutions can be multiple. Awesome! isn’t it? But you have to put these methods into practice on a daily basis. Like everything else, you will become better at this by practicing.
You heard it, buddy! Drag your sorry bum out of your whiny bed that you are slouching on and get going with some physical activity. Any physical activity, ranging from a refreshing walk on the beach or park to working out at home with body weight/resistance bands or in the gymnasium. Best bet- play a sport! Once you indulge in a physical activity, your brain produces endorphins (feel-good hormones) to bring down your stress levels.
Sleeping is very important. You can’t be up like that Duracell rabbit all the time. Both body and mind need a break. A good 7-9 hours of sleep (continuous is preferred) is effective to combat stress
Get yourself to a quiet place every day for a while. That indeed is a good habit considering there is always some chaos around us day in and day out. Just sit with your eyes closed and calm down your wavering mind by focusing on your breathing. Too many thoughts at one go can clutter your mind and give rise to unnecessary thoughts which can be unsettling. But you don’t have to worry. Just watch your thoughts go by, and try to become comfortable with them. After that, you might want to focus on anything soothing and comfortable.
- Family Time
We often fail when it comes to making time for our loved ones. We all know, that It is our family who will always stay by our side no matter what we go through. Spending time with them gives them much more happiness than any monetary or materialistic benefits they receive from us. That morning breakfast or lunch or dinner with the family could be the best time that we can cherish. Remember, time waits for none and it is precious. You can freeze it or go behind to re-live the moment with your family. So tread carefully.
- Social media slob
‘Text-neck’ has become a very common phenomenon in this world. A condition where your neck abnormally tilts anteriorly (tilted forward) due to prolonged bending while being hooked onto the phone. The number one cause of stress among teenagers and the driving factor towards suicides have been pointed at social media which is unfortunate. Social media was founded for the purpose of networking with people whom we may have lost touch earlier and for business to grow (which is still doing its part). But it also puts enormous pressure on the millennials who are hooked onto it every single moment. The failure of social acceptance or even a slight mockery has become intolerable amongst the youth. Everyone wants to be famous amongst their circle and wants to be accepted. There is nothing wrong with it as long as it is not an addiction. Hooking onto it for hours will turn you into a person that you are aspiring to become, but it won’t be you. Below are some of the reasons why you need to spend less time on social media.
- Facebook shares won’t reward you in any way if you check notifications on time.
- Britney Spears or Rihanna won’t mock you for having one less follower on Twitter or Instagram.
- Your social media absence won’t hamper your endorsement deals. If you are really worth it, it would come by on its own.
- If you don’t instantly reply to a meme, you are still accepted and loved.
Stress can be good and bad depending on the situation. A stressful situation can drive you to work harder and it could be productive. But it depends on how you take it. That is called Eustress. Bad stress just makes you paranoid and unproductive in real life situations. Bad stress can also shoot up your cortisol levels to the hilt and spoil your health in numerous ways. So, keep your addictions in check. Don’t let it get the better of you.
Author: Sairamnath Ananthakrishnan