How to Beat Stress
By Sara Butler
Self-care is important. Yet many people find reasons not to indulge in it week after week. If you don’t have your time for rest and renewal, then problems will crop up. You’ll find yourself exhausted and stressed out and on the verge of burnout. What can you do? Here are some tips to help you beat back stress and take care of yourself for a change.
The very first thing you need to do is uncover the reasons why it’s important to have regular time off. To do this, set a timer on your phone for two minutes. During this time, make a list of all the reasons why you should commit yourself to some time for self-care. Focus only on why you need it, not why you can’t. Then write down the consequences of not finding the time – perhaps it’s stressed relationships, health problems, or just a general feeling of malaise. It’s important to understand all the reasons why this time is so important.
Learn to Say No
You have to safeguard the time you put aside for self-care. This may mean learning to say no to some requests in your personal life and at work. You have to guard your time with your life, so don’t overextend yourself and let that drain your energy and disturb your focus. If you need to remind yourself why this important, look at your list of all the reasons taking time for self-care is so important.
Start with Small Steps
If taking an entire day off for self-care makes you feel like you’re going to break out in hives, then simply start small. When you get home from work, put on some relaxing tunes and take a bubble bath. Dedicate a couple of hours in the evening to time for you -- make a nice dinner, watch your favorite show, read that book that’s been on your list for a year. Commit to just one day a week in which you take an hour and focus on your own needs, then build from there. This time will help sustain you for the rest of the week – expand as you see fit!
Have a Plan
If you’re not used to having free time it can be a bit overwhelming at first. You get so used to working and moving fast that when you stop to take a look around you feel a little out of place. It’s important if you feel this way to stop yourself from going to your comfort zone and doing just a little work. Instead, plan some activities ahead of time to give your free time a bit more structure!
Stress is something you're always going to deal with -- so learn how to tame it for your health!
To learn more about your health and wellness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Northbrook, Ill.