Striving for success is something which is common in all professions. Be it a sports team or a multi national company, everyone wants to reach the pinnacle of success. While such aspirations and the competition they foster are desirable what they also give rise to is stress. Stress is the universal detriment of all professions. How many times have you seen a top player fumble in the finals even after rigorous practice and preparation? Haven’t you forgotten to write the answer of a question in the exam even though you had studied that portion? What do you think causes these? These are all outcomes of stress. The ones who can deal with it effectively are the ones who succeed. Let us have a look at the various ways in which you can manage stress.
1. Pursue a hobby
This is very important to take your mind off work. You maybe in office for a maximum of ten hours and those ten hours are only for work. Once you are back home you should be able to completely disconnect yourself from work related worries. This would not be possible unless you do something else which interests you. Pursuing any sort of hobby like reading, writing, gardening, singing, playing any sport will definitely reduce your stress level.
2. Interact with your family and friends
Sometimes talking about your favorite sports team with your college or school friends is all you need after a long day at work. Interacting with friends or family who do not work in the same place as you helps you unwind as the topic of discussion is anything but your daily work. For any sort of moral support you need after a bad day at work, a talk with your family members or your close friends would always help.
Sounds boring, doesn’t it? Maybe it is boring for some of you but trust me this is what you require. It helps you cool down after a strenuous day at work and also prepares you to deal with situations calmly. Its very easy to lose one’s cool and get angry but just think for a minute what good would that do?If you shout back at your senior you may end up getting fired, shout at your subordinates and you might see them on a campaign against labor abuse. Its never really helpful to be hot headed. Daily meditating for about ten minutes helps you deal with everyday things more easily and will play a major part in reducing stress.
4. Say no to caffeine
Many of us have the habit of drinking coffee to keep us going throughout the day but do you ever think what effect does this caffeine have on your body? While caffeine can be part of a healthy lifestyle, it also increases stress hormones and reduces calming brain chemicals, while restricting blood flow to the brain. Caffeine is even linked to four recognized psychiatric disorders. So if you are feeling stressed, grabbing a caffeine-laden cup of coffee, a soda or an energy drink is the totally wrong thing to do! Go for healthier substitutes like green tea .Even a glass of water can help recharge you.
5. Maintain a proper routine
Not having a routine is also one of the major causes of stress. If you do not get adequate sleep or skip breakfast, your day in office is bound to be bad. You may be too busy but having a routine would always help you maintain a proper lifestyle. Many a times while browsing through the different apps on our phone we just lose track of time and then end up getting less sleep. Lack of adequate sleep makes us irritated and spoils our mood for the entire day. This is why a routine is important. It tells us exactly when we should let go of our phone, when should we wake up and when should we have breakfast. Its a brilliant tool to improve your self discipline.
A healthy mind can reside only in a healthy body. This is why exercise is of utmost importance if one wants to beat stress. Even if you cannot hit the gym due to time or financial constraints consider doing some free hand exercises or jogging. Such exercises do not take too much time nor do they need any special gym equipment. Having a fit body enables you to work harder and you do not tire out easily. This also means you would not have to take recourse to caffeine laden energy drinks to boost yourself. The benefits of exercise are endless and stretch way beyond only managing your stress level.
7. Take a break
If you feel you are still stressed even after taking recourse to all the measures stated above then what you need is a break. Taking a break from work is nothing abnormal nor does it signify your lack of ability. It will help you recharge for the rest of the year ahead and when you come back from your vacation you would have become a greater force to reckon with. Taking a long leave may not always be possible, so when you do get a break enjoy it to the fullest without any distractions.
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Also published on Medium.