Tips for Keeping Stress Levels Down When Times Get Tough

Tips for Keeping Stress Levels Down When Times Get Tough

Nothing can hold you back quite like stress. It’s one of the biggest hinderances to thriving.

I’m so passionate about helping you better cope with and manage stress that I took a deeper dive into this topic in the Thrive on Purpose Community. So definitely check out the livestream replays in the “All About Stress” Unit in the group.

Ok, back to the post. 😉

The truth is, stressors are everywhere. Even a small amount of stress can severely impact your ability to perform. Therefore, it’s important to learn how to deal with your stress effectively so you can keep stress levels down.

According to a research study from New York University entitled, “Cognitive Emotion Regulation Fails the Stress Test,” even a small amount of stress negatively impacts a person’s ability to keep their emotions in check. Stress, if unchallenged, can build up in the body and mind.

Stress can also impinge on your love life. One study from 1984 found that chronic stress can have an undesirable impact on sex drive in men. In pregnant women, high levels of stress can have a negative effect on child development. It can also cause issues with body weight.

Finally, stress takes a toll on your heart. When you’re stressed, the hormones circulating in your blood can cause your heart to beat faster than necessary, and make your blood vessels constrict. This increases blood pressure and can exacerbate an existing heart condition.

keeping stress levels down

Photo by Deniz Altindas on Unsplash

It Won’t Happen – Probably

One of the biggest contributors to stress is worry. But, look at it this way: most of the things you worry about probably won’t happen.

Decide here and now to stop mulling over things that are out of your control.

Instead, put that energy into visualizing the outcome you’d like to see. Vividly visualizing the positive has repeatedly been shown to lower stress levels and keep them down.

Besides, worrying doesn’t contribute to the problem-solving process in any way. When has worry ever actually helped you resolve a crisis? In a stressful situation, you may find yourself asking the question, “What if..?” While that question can get you thinking, the stress-soaked mind isn’t in the position to generate solutions.

Remember that at any given moment, you’re either working on a solution, or you’re spending time worrying. Meditation is a great way to clear your mind and de-stress. To get started, simply designate five minutes out of your day to focus on your breathing.

When your thoughts move away from your breathing – and they will – refocus on each breath. As you gain proficiency, you can increase your sessions from 5 minutes to 10, and then to 15.

Meditation has been shown to reduce stress levels and blood pressure. Although meditation is powerful, there’s an even better way to deal with stress.

Everyday Stressors Add Up

A single neglected weed can take over a garden in a few weeks. Similarly, life’s small stresses quickly add up. Free yourself of these low-grade stressors by taking stock of them, and then drawing up a plan to deal with them one by one.

As you remove the small stressors from your daily life, you’ll empower yourself to deal with life’s larger issues. You’ll have more energy and feel more optimistic. With optimism comes opportunity.

Proactively dealing with stress is like taking off blinders. Suddenly you’ll find new and exciting ways to express yourself. You’ll form deeper relationships with your family and friends. You’ll also feel more gratitude for everyday things. Gratitude has its own rewards.

A Quick 2-Step Process For Proactively Managing Stress

1) Get started now by making a list of all the stressors in your life. Once you think you’ve got them all down, step away for a day, and then go back to the list to add any you forgot.

2) Then, go through them one by and write a sentence or two on how you can deal with them. Take action on your ideas. This takes time, but step-by-step, you’ll feel your stress melting away.

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Comments 43

  1. Stress is a horrible thing to have to dela with I know my mother and i are always stressing bout soemthing your outlook on this is great 🙂

  2. I love your advice on stress. I didn’t realize that as you remove the small stressors from your daily life, you’ll empower yourself to deal with life’s larger issues. You’ll have more energy and feel more optimistic. With optimism comes opportunity. Great advice.

  3. I really needed to read this article this time in my life. Thank you so much for these stress tips and just how to handle life in general. Keep it up!

  4. Lists are good but don’t get attached to them. Sometimes it’s a big help just to make the list then rip them up and throw them away

  5. Thank you for all the tips. After our house fire I developed severe anxiety and tend to worry about leaving our house so I’m one that can definitely benefit from your tips. Ty

  6. Great reminders! I have found that consciously counting to 100 with breaths can bring down my stress level significantly.

  7. When I was younger I seemed to thrive on stress. As I grow older stress seems to own me most days. I have taken up meditation to help deal with it. Your article is very informative and much appreciated.

  8. These are great tips, but for me, I am, at times, stressing about the not everyday kind of regular stresses. For a lot of seniors, in my opinion, we are past the everyday stressers we had when our children were still living under our roofs. I have confidence that under God’s instructional guidance, that we raised our kids right and they all live good lives! We taught them that God’s way is the best and in turn, they have raised their kids the same way! Even our granddaughter is 22years old & engaged and will be a virgin on her wedding night! Not a lot of 22 year olds can say that. Doe there are a lot of stressers we don’t have because of God’s goodness & grace! Prayers do work!! ?? Even for me! I have been terminal for 16 years! Back then, the docs gave me 5 years. The doctors call me their miracle patient! Well now I’m going to be 62 years old in July and time has caught up with me! The cancer is resurfacing and picking up friends along the way. Now I also have Hep C, Diabetes, High Cholesterol, and Rheumatoid Arthritis. So sickness is a different kind of worry or stressor. Now I’m on a lot of pain meds! I don’t stress anymore- I am just looking forward to the next chapter. Different strokes for different folks!

  9. I am really enjoying your page! Such smart and encouraging articles. This particular blog is very important on so many levels for so many people – stressors are everywhere and once a person learns to breath and not worry about the “what if’s” it can greatly reduce health problems. Thank you for the read.

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