5 ways to live a less stressful life

Unfortunately, stress is a reality of life — bad things happen sometimes. It’s not possible to eliminate all stress, yet we can choose how we react to perceived stressful events in different ways. We can also include more of the good things in our life, those things that help us to reduce the impact of any stress and maintain more calm, peace and sanity in our day-to-day life. Here are five ideas to do just that:

1. Do one thing at a time
This is the simplest and best way to start reducing your stress, and you can start today. Right now. Focus as much as possible on doing one thing at a time. Clear your desk of distractions. Pick something to work on. Need to write a report? Do only that. Remove distractions such as phones and email notifications while you’re working on that report. If you’re going to do email, do only that. Standing in line for a coffee? Do only that, without checking your phone. This takes practice, and you’ll get urges to do other things, but stick with it. Just keep practicing and you’ll get better at it.

2. Get moving
Do something each day to be active: walk, hike, play a sport, go for a run, do yoga. It doesn’t have to be gruelling to reduce stress. Just move. And have fun doing it.

3. Do something calming
What do you enjoy that calms you down? For many people, it can be the ‘get moving’ activity (see above). But it could also be taking a nap, a bath, or reading, or even housework. Some people like to meditate, or take a walk in nature. Find your calming activity and try to do it most days.

4. Develop one healthy habit this month
Other than getting active, improving your health overall will help with the stress. But do it one habit at a time. Eat fruits and veggies for snacks. Floss every day. Quit smoking. Cook something healthy for dinner. Drink water instead of soda. One habit at a time.

5. Have a blast!
Have fun each day, even if it’s just for a few minutes. Take time to play with the kids, play sports or rediscover board games. Watch funny TV shows. Whatever you choose, be sure to laugh…it’s a beautiful thing to do.

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