Stress is no stranger to many people, and it’s especially prevalent in young people. According to a recent survey, around half of Millennials and Gen Zs are stressed all or most of the time. This is a serious problem.
Unfortunately, much of this stress is caused by issues that most people can’t do much to change. Money is a huge stressor, as are concerned about the future, families, and health. The good news is that there are some lifestyle changes that you can make.
While they might not revolutionize the big issues, they can make life easier to deal with. Besides, you never know, reducing your stress may help you to improve your situation.
Develop Good Habits
The last thing you want to do when you’re stressed is to add more responsibilities, but sometimes it pays to be cruel to be kind. Exercise, going outside, and eating healthy food can do wonders for your stress levels. You just need the motivation to get started.
Develop a simple workout routine. Some people start with a fifteen-minute workout every other day, which will mainly help them to get used to the routine. In time, you can add more exercises and make it more challenging. Every now and then, mix it up with a jog or a brisk walk, so you can get some fresh air.
Also, find some quick and easy weeknight recipes so that you can eat fresh, healthy food. Some people prefer to meal prep on the weekend, but it’s important to choose a way to eat healthily that works best for you.
Stress and Time
As well as money concerns, many people are worried about their time. The two go hand in hand; as they say, time is money. As well as this, between work, family responsibilities, chores, and other concerns, it’s easy to run out of time for relaxing, hobbies, socializing, or even looking after yourself.
Self-neglect can result in an unfortunate cycle that’s difficult to escape and that can impact your health and stress levels. If you don’t sleep enough, then you will feel fatigued and generally unwell. Your mood will suffer and, eventually, your cognitive abilities will struggle. A shocking amount of people suffer from chronic sleep deprivation.
Sleep is just one part of the puzzle. A lack of time also robs people of the ability to prepare healthy meals, exercise, and simply rest and relax. This isn’t even factoring in finding time for socializing with friends and family. So, what can you do about it?
Lead an Efficient Life
Efficiency is normally something people talk about when it comes to working, but you can integrate efficiency into your everyday life as well. By being more efficient in your everyday responsibilities, you can carve out more time for yourself.
So, how can you make sure that you’re more efficient with your time? Time tracking apps can be incredibly helpful for determining how much time certain tasks take you. Most time tracking apps are designed for the workplace, and they’re incredibly helpful if you work from home.
One issue with working from home is that it’s easy to just keep working. In an office, you physically leave your work behind when you go home, which makes it easier for your mind to focus on other things. But, when you work from home, the temptation to wander back to your desk and finish just one more task is always there.
A time tracking app can tell you exactly how much time you spend working, as well as what you’re doing with that time. Even better, the principles of keeping track of your time can be used for other parts of your life. Once you know how your day is divided up, you can find out where to shave off a few minutes.
This doesn’t mean that you should rush through everything. As the saying goes, you want more speed and less haste. Rushing is stressful and can lead to mistakes, which only waste time in the long run. Instead, you should do things smartly.
Schedule your work, chores, and other tasks in the day, but be sure to schedule some time to rest and relax as well. Most importantly, stick to your schedule. Build good habits like cleaning as you cook. Rather than spending a few hours cleaning at the weekend, do a room at a time each day and keep things topped up. Eventually, you’ll find that good time management can give you some more of the most precious resource you have – time.
One of the most important parts of reducing stress is leading a balanced life. Work-life balance is a hot-button subject at the moment, as more and more people are experiencing burnout. Burnout can sap your physical, mental, and emotional health and can lead to a crash that’s very difficult to recover from.
Another thing many people talk about is self-care. As mentioned earlier, self-care is something that should be scheduled into your life as well as your other responsibilities. However, self-care should be balanced. It’s easy to take self-care to the point where you always listen to your wants over your needs. This might seem nice to start with, but by neglecting responsibilities, you’ll find that you eventually have to deal with a much larger problem than you’d have had before.
Also, self-care isn’t always healthy. You can’t be bothered to cook, so you order takeout and eat chips and ice cream all night. You don’t want to exercise, so you spend an extra hour in bed. These things aren’t necessarily bad once in a while, but if you make a habit of them, your health will suffer.
On the other hand, while good time management can help you to free up precious time, you can go too far with it. Constantly having an eye on the clock or getting anxious when you go a few minutes late on a certain task certainly won’t reduce your stress. Be flexible and, if your scheduling method doesn’t work, tweak it until it does. You know what’s best for you.