How worrying is it that 66% (1) of us feel stressed before we even get out of bed? And it’s one of those things that seems to snowball no matter what you do. It impacts on everything; the choices we make in our diet, our ability to get a restful night’s sleep and a state of mind that’s more negative.

This is why learning how to cope with stress, because it’s a part of life we all have to learn to manage, is a skill it’s wise to spend some time mastering. It comes back to that all-important one per cent of your day, those 15 minutes when a good decision can make the rest of the day amazing. Choose your me-time well; have a conversation with a friend who always makes you laugh, dance to your favourite song (twice) or have sex – do something that you know will make you smile. That’s all there is to it.

 

Are you stressing yourself?

  • Do you put too much pressure on yourself to be perfect? Loosen up and try not to be too much of a perfectionist. Set goals, but don’t feel like a failure if you don’t meet them. It’s okay.
  • Are you stressing about the stress in your life? I don’t need to tell you this is a vicious cycle. Give yourself a break.
  • If you feel stress building and you can take 15 minutes then head outside for a blast of cardio. It doesn’t have to be sweaty, but the combination of increased heart-rate and some exercise-endorphins could help you out of the stress cycle. A brisk walk would be enough.
  • If you’re over-analysing you could find yourself stressing even more – change the subject in your head and let go – you never know, things may become clearer.
  • Take time out and write a list of three, or more, things that have happened today that have made you feel happy, good or settled. It’ll stay with you for the rest of the day.
  • If stress is standing between you and sleep try stretching before bed. Put down that smartphone, it over-stimulates the brain, and ease yourself into some stretches and be sure to breathe deeply.

If that doesn’t convince you then bear in mind that stress can mean we burn 100 fewer calories after eating and you’re more likely to store fat. Time to switch off and relax don’t you think?

  1. ‘Life at Home’ report by IKEA, 2014, survey of over 2000 people.

 

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