These 13 habits may just be the key to committing to living a stress-free life.
RELATED: Reducing Stress
13 Things You Should Start Doing for a Stress-Free Living
1. Wake up Early
Getting up late can throw off your whole schedule for the day. This can lead to higher stress levels, decreased productivity, and more mistakes at work.
Waking up early will allow you to start your day right and light. You’ll have enough time to make yourself a decent breakfast to get you energized.
The sheer freedom of not having to rush everything just to get somewhere or finish something on time results in a better headspace and healthier stress levels.
You’ll get more control over all of your to-dos for the day. As they say, if you win the morning, you win the day.
Doing more than one thing at a time is a surefire way to feel busier. Busy doesn’t always mean “productive,” most of the time it means “stressed.”
Our brains can only do so much. When we multitask, we spread our focus and energy thin which may lead to a mediocre job of everything.
You should “single-task” instead—focus on one thing at a time. This way, your focus and energy aren’t scattered.
If it’s time to work, get rid of all the distractions around you. Turn your notifications off, keep your phone away, and have a deep dive into the task at hand.
Easy as it might sound, old habits like checking your phone or notifications are hard to break. Practice every day and you’ll eventually get better at it.
3. Simplify Your Schedule
An overloaded schedule can stress you out. Stick to the essentials and simplify your day.
Say no to activities and ditch commitments that aren’t beneficial to you. If you’re not really needed in a meeting, it’s best to politely decline.
As a general rule, it may help to schedule two to three important things each day and always put breathing time in between.
4. Get Physical!
Living a sedentary life can raise your stress levels so get up and get moving. Dancing, sports, yoga, and even just walking will do.
It doesn’t have to be extreme and you don’t even have to go out if you don’t want to. If you love socializing, you can organize weekend sports activities with your friends or go to a gym.
If not, you can always exercise at home.
5. Do Something That Calms You Every Day
Soothing yourself with whatever methods you find relaxing is also important to living a stress-free life. Setting aside an hour of calm daily to uplift your mood, refresh your thoughts, and destress your mind and body.
Here are a few ideas:
- Do yoga and meditation.
- Cook a nice breakfast or dinner.
- Read before sleeping.
- Write a journal.
- Run a bath.
- Clean the house and do some chores.
6. Develop a Healthy Habit Each Month
Aside from becoming physically active, your overall health affects your stress levels. Here’s an idea: develop a healthy habit each month.
- Quit smoking.
- Floss every day.
- Eat healthy snacks.
- Cut back on sugar.
- Drink more water.
- No more soda.
- Eat less junk food.
You’ll notice that the better you take care of yourself, the better you will feel. So, develop one healthy habit at a time for a stress-free life.
7. Streamline Your Finances
If dealing with your finances sucks the life out of you, you have to find out ways on how to simplify things.
- Automate your savings and bills and debt payments.
- Hire an accountant for your taxes.
- Spend less by shopping at malls or online less.
Your surroundings can affect your mood and state of mind. Cluttered spaces can overwhelm the brain with too much sensory information, which can then make you more irritable and stressed.
More than just a clean space, decluttering and organizing your home or work desk actually have benefits to your mental health, stress levels, and productivity.
- The act of cleaning can be a stress-reliever in itself for some.
- An uncluttered bedroom can improve your sleep.
- Seeing your decluttering progress creates positive reinforcement and can boost your mood.
- A clean or organized workspace is rid of distractions which can increase focus, productivity, and creativity.
- An uncluttered desk or room can reduce anxiety and stress levels.
9. Get Creative!
Letting out your inner artist is a great way of destressing and preventing stress. May it be writing stories or poems, painting, calligraphy, sketching, or pottery, making art is found to reduce stress levels—you don’t even have to be good at it.
A study called Reduction of Cortisol Levels and Participants’ Responses Following Art Making reported 45 minutes of making art reduces stress regardless of artistic talent or experience.
Cortisol Definition: The body’s stress hormone
10. Laugh More
Life can be stressful as it is, it’s no use taking it too seriously. So, always find time to have a good laugh each day.
Laughing is actually therapeutic and there’s research to back this up. It’s going to make you feel lighter, better, it’s an instant pick-me-up!
Go be silly with your friends, watch a few funny videos at work, binge your favorite comedies over the weekend, and call it self-care because it is.
11. Avoid Conflict as Much as Possible
Being around people who share the same values as yours can help you avoid conflicts and unnecessary arguments.
This doesn’t mean you have to avoid people with different views as yours altogether. Be open to other people’s ideas and thoughts as these can help you grow.
If you reach a disagreement, however, and it starts to stress you out, it’s best to let go. Remember that you don’t have to win.
At the end of the day, what’s important is you know you are secure with your own beliefs and opinions. These types of arguments will just stress you out for no good reason.
12. Stop Caring About What Other People Think
If there’s something you want to get, do, or have, go for it. Don’t let other people’s opinions on a situation affect your decisions.
If something will make you happy, then that’s purely your business. No use stressing yourself over what other people might say.
13. Do Not Overanalyze Situations That Have Yet to Happen
We tend to get stressed out about things that haven’t happened yet. Maybe it’s human nature but come to think of it, it brings you no good.
There’s no way for you to predict the future and the constant anticipation and catastrophizing will mess with your peace.
Catastrophizing Definition: A cognitive distortion common with people with generalized anxiety disorders where they always imagine the worst possible scenario
Don’t create stress out of thin air. Deal with the situation as it comes, react accordingly.
Starting your day strong can also help in reducing stress. Check out these healthy hacks!
Stress is a silent killer and can cause a range of health conditions. Remember that keeping the body stress-free is keeping the body healthy.
Do you have any other tips on how to live a stress-free life? Share them with us in the comments section below!