When you know you’re spreading yourself too thin, especially because you are tired, cranky, and harried, you create unnecessary stress. It feels like you are trying to accomplish too many things at the same time. Therefore, it is crucial to take a step back and restructure personal habits and priorities so you can accomplish what you need to each day and still find some downtime. Trying to change everything at once — such as quitting smoking, fixing your diet, and sleeping nine hours per night — increases the risk of failure as well as stress. Learn about how to live a stress-free lifestyle with these tips now.
Focus On One Thing At A Time
Individuals are more likely than ever to multi-task at work and in their personal lives. However, multitasking isn’t the best avenue for reducing stress or even quality work. If you focus on one thing at a time, you can actually accomplish each task and ensure you’re giving it your best. It’s really about quality over quantity. It’s easy to download a to-do list app or to use a notebook or a sticky note to track the tasks you must do each day. While adjusting to a to-do list may seem stressful at first, it can provide a sense of accomplishment when each task gets crossed out. One item at a time!
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Simplify Your Schedule
Another thing that will impact individuals, even those who already use to-do lists to stay organized, is they make too many commitments. Those who overcommit typically have the best of intentions, but aren’t being realistic about actually having enough available time. Often what can happen is just when you get your time management skills perfected at work, your boss gives you another assignment, or you have more errands to do for the family. Individuals often compensate for these situations by dropping an item they want to do for themselves, such as working out, or they push themselves even harder and sacrifice sleep or healthy eating, to meet everyone’s expectations. Not simplifying your schedule can lead not only to high stress levels, but also burnout.
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Do Something Relaxing
Even on evenings and weekends, poor time management results in staying late at work and running errands like the grocery trip when you should do something relaxing. This means a few things. First, set your bedtime for the same time each night and then plan which hour or hours of the day are reserved for relaxation. For this reason, experts recommend individuals don’t try to work out or watch television right before bedtime. Second, they recommend keeping some time unscheduled, especially on regular days off. This way it’s possible to take a long trip to the beach or catch a satisfying nap. For some individuals, relaxation could just mean finding time to swim in the pool or take a stroll around the block. Others may need a nap. Find what works and stick to it!
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Too much sitting at work or laying around the house does not get your blood flowing or use your joints and muscles. It could be time to join the gym, buy a bicycle, or find a jogging partner. To get active, you may even decide to incorporate a brisk walk into a place you already pass each day, such as a park near work or a nature trail near home. If you get someone else, such as a friend or loved one, to become part of the routine, you will have greater opportunities for socialization and a reason to keep up your workouts. Being active can help you burn calories and increase strength and agility, which help you prevent the effects of aging. Exercise also increases the production of endorphins and reduces the production of cortisol at night, both of which help reduce overall stress.
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If you maintain an attitude of all work and no play, your daily stress will just increase. Other people will find it harder to be around you because you always seem tense and anxious and in a hurry to accomplish the next thing on your to-do list. Even individuals who can find five minutes to meditate per day will release tension and feel a greater ability to focus on each task. You can also find opportunities to have fun. For some individuals, it might be going to trivia night with co-workers after the work day is over, and for others, it could be tossing a football around with the neighbor’s kids. To have fun, you have to be able to set aside a to-do list for a little while and stay present in each moment. You have to allow yourself to let loose and enjoy the company of others.