I have observed for a long time now that people tend to become extremely stressed when the first month of every year comes. It’s like people become frantic to make a lot of things done. Should this be how we start the year? Aside from careful planning and goal setting, we should also learn how to consciously rid ourselves of stress, or even prevent it from sticking to us. Why? The answer is simple. Stress makes us less productive. So here are some tips on how we may be able to prevent ourselves from getting unnecessarily stressed:
- Perform tasks one at a time – avoid multitasking. Why does doing tasks one at a time prevent stress? It is because when we do more than one thing at once, our mind becomes overloaded. Our thoughts become mixed up. This will then result in confusion, errors, or delays, then inevitably stress will immediately take over. On the other hand, if we stick to completing one task at a time, we can focus all our energy and mind on the task at hand with no other distracting thoughts. This will then result in the task being finished faster, and for another task to be started. When this is the case, would we feel relaxed or stressed? I bet we all know the answer.
- Get enough rest every day. Have you ever tried waking up in the morning feeling very tired and not wanting to do anything? While there can be several possible reasons for such feelings, the most common one is not getting enough sleep. If we already feel that way in the morning, what do we expect the rest of the day would go? This feeling would lead to a lot of consequences such as unfinished tasks, and a hot temperament. Needless to say, not having enough rest will lead us to stress.
- Energize yourself by eating healthily and exercising constantly. Based on personal experience and from others’ experiences, eating healthy food can boost our mood and energy as opposed to eating unhealthy foods. When we eat unhealthy foods, we tend to become sleepy and less energized. On the contrary, we feel refreshed and energetic when we ingest the right kind of food. This has a similar effect on our body as exercise. Although we become sweaty and almost breathless after exercising, we can feel that our muscles become more alive as the tensions that build up was released.
- Take a breather from time to time. We sometimes think that a productive day means being able to work on a lot of things nonstop. We often fail to realize that when we push ourselves to continuously work the whole day, our minds and bodies become weary and less efficient. Despite the seemingly endless tasks we may have, we should always take even a short breather every day. We should always take the time to go on break to refresh ourselves. Taking a breather is not only a way for us to regain our strength, but also a way to rid ourselves of possible unhelpful thoughts building up in our minds.
- Embrace the fact that there are things you can’t control. Of course, there are things that no amount of planning or concentration can solve. Some things are out of our control, may it be because of natural causes or human intervention. This is a fact that we need to accept. What we can control is how we respond to such inevitable situations. If we try to control it, we are just unnecessarily adding stress to ourselves. What we should do is do what we can on our end and let it go.
“Life is what you make it.” ~Eleonor Roosevelt
While it is true that we have no hold over a lot of things or happenings around us, we have control over ourselves. We can help ourselves or condition ourselves to do what can result in something good or better. We have to choose to help ourselves rather than giving in to negativity.
Do you agree?