10 Ways to Reduce Stress Now

Thursday, December 6, 2012

The holiday season is upon us, the end of the year is approaching and everyone is trying to get a lot of stuff done in a short period of time. This tends to be a recipe for unnecessary stress… Here are 10 things you can do, right now, to reduce your stress level.

  1. Step away from your desk and take a 5-minute walk outside, or around your office building.
  2. For the next 3 minutes, close your eyes, and focus on your breathing.  Inhale, exhale… that’s all you need to think about for the next three minutes… (go ahead, set your timer and begin).
  3. Remain focused on what you are doing right now – do not allow your mind to wander to what you have to do tonight, tomorrow, or even in the next hour. Just stay in this present moment.
  4. Clean the clutter off your desk.
  5. Clean out one file cabinet drawer.
  6. Spend 5 minutes petting your cat or dog.
  7. Schedule a mental health day for you to do whatever you want sometime in the next two weeks (Yes, you can find one open day…).
  8. Schedule the first 30 minutes of tomorrow (or the next day) as time just for you – no email, no phone calls, no appointments – just you getting your mind set for the day ahead.
  9. Write down five things you are grateful for right now.  (Pause here and go do that now – it will shift your perspective.)
  10. Decide to stop reacting to events in your life as stressful (instead of thinking, “Oh my goodness, I have so much to do today, how will I get it all done!!?”, say, “I’m grateful I have this day ahead and an abundance of things to occupy my time”).  It’s only stressful if you think it’s stressful.

This is a wonderful time of year – don’t waste it being stressed!

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