How do you deal with stress?
It’s the first Wednesday of November, which means it is National Stress Awareness Day. I find that it is a great opportunity to do some self-reflection to see how I manage my stress levels. As a new mum, my stress factors are very different from when I worked full time with various side-hustles.
Stress can differ from person to person. It depends on how the individual manages internal and external pressure together with a bunch of other variables. Two individuals can have the exact amount of workload but experience it differently. One may breeze through, whereas the other crumbles under the pressure. It is important to acknowledge the effect of stress. If it is not dealt with, it can lead to or exacerbate mental health conditions. I would suggest you turn to your GP, local support groups or your work’s occupational health department if this is happening to you.
My 5 Top Tips
I have collated my five top tips to deal with stress. Having both a BSc and an MSc under my belt and balanced multiple jobs in the past, I have had my fair share of feeling a bit overwhelmed with stress. In the hope that it will help someone else I have therefore put together this list.
I pick what needs to be done most urgently and what carries the highest impact/importance, as it is unlikely that everything needs to be done at once. I apply this in my private life as well. For example I might swap a workouts for a catch-up if I really need social interaction over physical activity.
What contributing factors make you feel stressed? For me it is an uncontrolled to-do list which is unachievable. So I prioritise and set timeframes to complete the most important tasks. Having a smaller, and more manageable to-do list, reduces my stress levels. An other factor for me is constant notifications on my phone. I have therefore removed some notifications from appearing on my home-screen or I put my phone in aeroplane mode.
Be an early riser
I’m a morning person, but if you’re a night owl this may not work as well for you. As I am more productive in the morning I find setting my alarm an hour or so earlier helps me tick off some things on my to-do. I know I would never get these done in the end of the day as I am too tired and I would stress about not having achieved what I set out to achieve. This is how I managed to complete my MSc dissertation whilst working full-time. Now I find it helps me get tasks done before my daughter wakes up and demands all my attention! Whether it is writing a blog post or doing some yoga, it helps me feel more accomplished.
Find time for mindfulness
I try to do a little bit of Yoga, mindfulness or go a walk when I feel overwhelmed with stress. I find having some time away from constant stimuli to be able to just ‘be’, is so helpful and refreshing.
Take time away
When social media has a negative and stressful effect on me I take a digital detox. Often being away from constant stimulation can help my natural creativity to flourish. If it is work that you find stressful, do you have any spare annual leave left? How about a long-weekend to rest up and get your mojo back?
Let me know in the comments if you found this post useful!