Living a healthy lifestyle isn't just about what you put in your body or how much you work out, it's also about how well you take care of yourself daily and manage your stress. Here's a list of helpful strategies and techniques you can use to manage your stress levels or ways you can implement more self-care into your daily life:
Give yourself permission every day to do nothing but sit down and breathe. Try to do this a few times a day if possible. It could be a moment to yourself before your day starts or in the middle the day when you begin to feel overwhelmed or anxious. Pause, and focus on your breathing for just 5 minutes and feel the stress melt away.
Take Physical Breaks
Taking a short break and moving is a great way to ease moments of stress. Take 10 minutes and get up and walk. You can enjoy this time to walk around the block, go out to your patio area or backyard, or even just getting up and taking a lap around the house is helpful. The purpose here is to keep your body moving, taking small moments to disconnect from things that might be putting pressure on you.
Create a Routine
Identify a few things that you enjoy and make an effort to do them daily. This could be a morning routine of stretching and journaling, meditation in the afternoon, or a nighttime routine that includes limiting screen time 1-2 hours before going to sleep, reading a book instead of watching the news or setting a 9 pm bedtime. Whatever it is, put in place some healthy habits that you can commit to daily and practice them.
Pencil it In
Getting in the habit of creating calendar appointments for things that fill your life can help you move forward toward a goal, or even instill purpose within your week. Put calendar appointments into your phone for workouts and meal prep, plan a FaceTime with a family member or a virtual game night with friends.
Journaling can be a therapeutic way to unload any fears, anxieties, or built-up stress. If you’re new to integrating journaling into your life, start by writing 10 things you're grateful for. This doesn't have to be a long list or overly complicated. The list could include anything such as your health, family, job, clean air, running water, access to food – anything you appreciate. Come back daily to your list and reread what you wrote, or carve out some additional time to build upon it.