In all honesty, stress is inevitable and occurs at all ages. You could be 15 and stressing about your examinations or you could be 35 and stressing about your upcoming deadline at work. Stress occurs because we have an expectation which we want to achieve. In a way, stress serves to motivate, yet if not properly managed, stress can also cause burnout which affects your physical and psychological well being. While it may not be possible to make stress a choice all the time, here are some tips to prevent a burnout.
Have a good start and take breaks
Instead of rushing out the door in the morning, make it a habit to wake up slightly earlier for some breathing exercises or light stretching to refresh your body and mind before heading to work. If you are not a morning person, try to ensure that you allocate time to take a breather or sit down to recollect yourself. Taking short breaks throughout the day can help you to refocus and improve your physical and mental well-being, thus increasing productivity.
Load up on Vitamin Bs
The tendency to eat occurs frequently when one is stressed but instead of reaching out for that chocolate bar or coffee mug, stocking up on Vitamin B rich food not only helps to sustain the body, but also has a positive effect on the brain. Examples of such food are almonds, blueberries, sunflower seeds and milk.
Did you know? April is observed as the National Stress Awareness Month in the US.
Set some time aside for exercise, stick to the schedule, and do not procrastinate. Ensure that you make time for physical activity at least 3 times a week. A good workout will not only help to relieve stress but can help energise your body as well.
Create and prioritise a to-do list at the start of the day and aim to finish them up by end of the day. Learn to maintain work life balance so that you do not overexert yourself. A good work life balance also ensures that you will always have time for yourself and your loved ones.
And by that we do not mean getting your eyes glued to the screen in front of you, surfing Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. Instead, get out and about with your family and friends. Take time to enjoy the company of others and it can help reduce your stress. Ultimately, the solution to reducing or managing stress is to set your mind on creating a better lifestyle for yourself. Understand your limits and work around them. It will take time to re-organise your life but once you manage to, you can prevent yourself from a burnout and renew your zeal for your work and your life.
As we all react differently to stress, take the first step to accept that stress can happen anytime, observe and note about your responses to stress, before gradually making the necessary changes to your lifestyle.
Fun fact: Did you know that stress can reduce the ability to cope with physical pain?
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