Famed country singer Willie Nelson once said, “The biggest killer on the planet is stress.” While Nelson’s opinion might not necessarily be backed by scientific fact, it’s definitely true that stress exacerbates many illnesses and often causes illnesses. In our fast-paced world, anxiety and stress are often what plague us most on a day-to-day basis. If you are concerned about your overall health and wellbeing, then the number one thing you should try to deal with is stress. Here are some tips based on my personal experiences with chronic anxiety.
1. Get a pet.
Pets have been proven in many scientific studies to reduce stress. If you can afford the time and money required to maintain a happy and healthy pet, then go for it. It’s one of the easiest ways to deal with stress and anxiety because pets love you unconditionally. There’s nothing better than coming home to, for example, a dog that is always happy to see you, always forgives you of your faults, and is there for you no matter what. Even the simply act of caressing a pet can bring down your stress and anxiety levels.
2. Find a physical activity that’s fun and you can stick to.
By now, it’s common knowledge that exercise goes a long way in keeping stress, anxiety, and depression at bay. The only problem with prescribing exercise as an antidote to stress is that an exercise regimen is hard to stick to. That’s why I always advise people to look for an activity that they actually enjoy. Personally, I find tennis to be a game that’s physically challenging and fun. Try different sports and activities until you find one that you’re truly motivated to do at least two or three times a week.
3. Make time for relaxation.
In order to combat stress before it gets to you, it’s important that you actually make stress relief a priority. If you are a workaholic, you’ll have to give up some of your obsession with work in order to relieve chronic stress. Of course, work hard and smart during work hours, but when you get home, stop checking your email and thinking about work. Partake in relaxation techniques like yoga, taking a bath with Epsom salts, or doing breathing exercises. Relaxing activities like going for a walk, talking to a friend on the phone, or reading a good book are all great ways to prevent and alleviate stress.
In the final analysis, stress doesn’t have to be a constant problem in your life. Just be sure to recognize when you’re getting stressed, and take preventative steps so stress doesn’t threaten your wellbeing. Good luck!
Amelia Wood is a blogger and freelance writer who often writes to explain medical billing and coding online. She also enjoys giving advice about health, personal finance, and sustainable living. She welcomes your questions and comments at firstname.lastname@example.org.