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Stress management

Do you often feel stressed and anxious? Stress is a natural part of life and you need to learn how to deal with it in the best possible way to feel good and avoid stress-related illnesses. In this article, I explain more about what stress is and provide tips and exercises on how to reduce stress.

What is stress?

A stress reaction can be triggered for many different reasons. It could be that you feel you have too much to do, have put enormous pressure on yourself to perform, or something as simple as getting to a meeting on time. When you get stressed, your autonomic nervous system kicks in, affecting things like breathing, heartbeat, blood pressure and digestion. This can be uncomfortable but it is not dangerous. However, stress is not only bad but can also have positive effects. For example, if you are entering a competition or giving a speech, stress can give you the final push you need to perform well.

How to deal with stress?

Managing stress at work and in your personal life is important for finding a good balance in your life. So how do you manage stress? Stress management is about getting to know yourself and using exercises, tips and tricks to prevent too much stress that can lead to illness.

Managing stress tips

Here are some tips on how to reduce stress and how to think about managing stress effectively:

Finding the balance - Trying to find a balance between family, work and leisure can be incredibly difficult but it is also an important part of stress management. One tip is to be careful to distinguish between work and leisure. Leave your computer at work when you go home and let the things that can wait until tomorrow's work day actually wait until tomorrow.

Prioritize! - Write down everything you have to do that you are stressing about and start prioritizing. What is most important and what you should start with? Is there anything you can delegate? Stress management can feel a bit easier when you know exactly what you have to do and set up a plan for how to tackle it.

Remember recovery - The body and brain need recovery to better cope with stress. Make sure you sleep at least 7 hours a night and take several breaks during the working day.

Exercise more - It is well known that exercise increases energy levels and improves fitness, which in turn can also help reduce stress. Take advantage of everyday exercise by, for example, walking or cycling to work.

Finding the joy in managing stress - The better you learn the tricks of effective stress management, the less stressed you will feel. It will make you happier and more motivated!

Managing stress exercises

There are lots of exercises for stress management. For example, mindfulness is an effective technique for managing stress and reducing anxiety, where you shift your attention away from what is stressing you. Here are some stress management exercises that you can do yourself:

1. Exercise for presence

Being fully present in the moment is not always easy. A simple exercise you can do is to eat an apple and focus completely on what is happening in the moment. Hold the apple in your hand and take in its color, shape and scent. Slowly take a bite and think about how the apple feels in your mouth and what flavors you experience.

2. Breathing exercises

Breathing exercises are a well-known method of stress management. By focusing on your breathing, you stop and regain your calm, which can be important in very stressful situations. Sit with your back straight, move your attention to your breathing and listen to your breath. Use the 6-2-7 rule when breathing. This means 6 seconds of inhalation, 2 seconds of holding your breath and 7 seconds of exhalation. Breathe deep into your stomach and let your shoulders relax. By following this technique, you will quickly feel calmer while actually detoxing your stress out of your body.

3. Relaxation exercise

A final exercise to deal with stress is a relaxation exercise. Lie down, close your eyes and take deep breaths. With each exhalation, relax and focus on how your stomach moves as you breathe. Then move your focus further and feel the rest of your body part by part. Here you train your ability to shift your focus while being present, which has a positive effect on your brain as it stops producing the stress hormone cortisol while you do the exercise.

Stress management with Tommy

Are you struggling to find your balance in life? I have extensive experience in stress management and with my method The Flow Mindset can help you find power, energy and balance to enjoy life even more. Together we make sure that no challenge is too big and that you get the tools you need to be in the moment. By reducing stress and learning to manage stress at work and in your personal life, you can find your Flow in life. From there you are unstoppable and can live a life filled with meaning, happiness and a higher level of success!

Free crash course in The Flow Mindset

Are you ready to change your life and learn all about stress management? Take my short online course that introduces you to The Flow Mindset! This workshop is completely free and gives you both the insights and tools to start your change today. Click on the link below to access the webinar!

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About the author

Picture of Tommy Davidovic
Tommy Davidovic

Cert. Coach (CPCC, PCC, CTPC) & Mental Trainer. I help performers in sport, career and life to maximize their success and feel good in the process.

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