Tips for Stress

We all have stress in our lives. Some stress adds flavor, challenge, and excitement. Too much stress, however, can cause problems. Here are 10 techniques to help you manage stress.

Learn To Relax

Making relaxation part of your routine can reduce stress significantly. There are many ways to practice relaxation. Explore relaxation techniques that will work best for you.

Practice Acceptance

Acceptance is seeing reality for what it is, even if you do not like it. It's recognizing that "it just is." It is learning how to cope with situations that you have no control over.

Talk Rationally To Yourself

Practice compassionate self-talk. What advice would you give a friend going through the same situation? Will the current stressor matter in one week? One month? One year from now? If not, put the stressor in perspective.

Get Organized

Develop a realistic schedule of daily activities that includes time for work, sleep, relationships, and recreation. Use a daily To Do list to help you use your time and energy as efficiently as possible. Improve your physical surroundings by cleaning your room and work area.

Try Physical Activity

Physical activity has been proven to provide relief from stress. Develop a regular exercise program to help reduce the effects of stress before it becomes distress. Try walking, aerobics, jogging, dancing, or swimming--any physical activity you enjoy will work. If you are not sure where to start, Rec IM can be a good resource. 

Reduce Time Urgency

Practice the notion of pace, not race. LIfe is not a sprint, it is a marathon. If you frequently check your watch or worry about being late, allow more time than you think you will need to get things done. Try to allow yourself to be present while working on your tasks, rather than thinking about the next thing you need to get done.

Don’t Dwell on Contrasts

Competition breeds stress. Learn to notice the similarities between yourself and others rather than the differences. In so doing, you will replace separateness, greed, and jealousy with compassion, connectedness, and harmony.

Balance Work and Fun

Balance school and work demands with some fun and private time. Hobbies are good antidotes for daily pressures. Unwind by taking a quiet stroll, watching a sunset, enjoying time spent with friends or simple activities.

Watch Your Habits

Habits can help us or hurt us. Healthy habits, such as taking care of ourselves physically (eating well, getting enough sleep, and exercising), socially (spending time with friends) and emotionally (practicing gratitude and identifying and expressing your feelings)can help reduce stress. Unhealthy habits, such as too much screen time, too much sleep, excess alcohol or using other drugs can hinder our ability to effectively manage stress.

Talk To Friends

Friends can be good medicine. Daily doses of conversation, regular social engagements, and occasional sharing of deep feelings and thoughts can reduce stress quite nicely.

Counseling and Psychological Services offers free, confidential personal counseling to help you deal with stress management issues.