10 Ways to Lower Your Stress Levels

Stress is such a huge factor in our lives and I don't even think we realize it. There are times when I will get to a certain point in the day and realize that I've been clenching my shoulders, my jaw,  or my teeth. When I consciously try to release that tension, I feel a weight lift off my shoulders, literally. They've done studies that prove the effects on not just your mental health, but even your immune system. Keeping your stress levels in check is key to a happy and healthy lifestyle. 

So, this week I decided to gather some of the ways that I use to reduce stress, these really do work, remember that taking care of yourself should be high priority. If you don't take care of yourself it makes it hard for you to give your all to others or even in your professional life. 

Get Movin' 

One of the ways that seems to work very well for me to reduce stress is to sweat it out! Don't push yourself too much, but a healthy workout when you're feeling overwhelmed can do so much. If running seems like too much of an overexertion, stick to something like yoga, pilates, or even zumba! If you have trouble getting to a gym or to a class, use Youtube! There are tons of workouts of all different shapes and sizes. The two that I use the most are Denise Austin's pilates workout, and "Butt Blaster."  

Take A Hot Shower or Bath 


This picture above would be my ideal way to de-stress, however my college apartment bathtub looks a little different than this tub. A hot shower or bath is a great way to reset and relax, you get out feeling like a new person. If you are lucky enough to have a bathtub, make sure you invest in a good bath bomb, my personal favorite scent in lavender. Light some candles, grab a snack and a good book, and take it easy.  

Do Whatever Your Hobby Is  

If you're feeling overwhelmed whether it is at work or at school, take a brain break! It doesn't have to be for very long, but in that time do something that relaxes you. Do you love knitting in your free time? Or maybe reading? When life is getting you down and you're feeling stressed pick up that thing that you love, even if it's for a short time, and you will be amazed at your mindset when you go back to what you were working on! 

Vent to a Friend  


When life has you stressed, grab a friend and go get a cup of coffee. Or if you can't do that, give them a phone call. Talking about your stress, saying it out loud, and getting another persons' opinion can be so helpful. Sometimes your friends are the people that help you laugh even when life is tough and you're feeling discouraged. Friends and family are the people that you can lean on, so when life gets tough they are a great resource. 

Eat a Snack  


Hunger can definitely affect your mood, I know for me being "hangry" is an emotion I seem to experience when I am stressed. When you feel that looming feeling of being overwhelmed, go grab a yummy snack. Keep in mind what you are putting in your body, go for something with a health mix of protein, carbs, etc. A great snack is yogurt, granola, and fresh fruit. It's light, healthy, and totally yummy. It's amazing how your mood can change when you have a full belly.  

Go for a Drive and Sing ! 


This doesn't work for everyone, but it certainly does for me. When I'm feeling stressed, I turn on a favorite tune while I'm in the car and blast it. I go for a drive and belt out all the lyrics (most likely incorrectly). There have been studies done about the power of music over our emotions, so when you need a little pick-me-up, go for a drive and key up your favorite playlist !  

Find Peace in Nature 


Grab your hiking boots and go for a walk! Getting out in nature is great for clearing your mind and obtaining a sense of calm. Go somewhere quiet, find a good book, a blanket, and a snack and breathe in the fresh air. Being in nature gives you perspective and the quiet gives you a chance to think clearly.  



Go out and volunteer your time! I wish I had more time to do this because volunteering is so rewarding! It's very easy to find opportunities to volunteer and give back to your community, you can honestly just go online and Google "volunteer opportunities in my area." Volunteering your time to someone else takes you out of your problems, and allows you to give your time and help someone else with theirs. Volunteering allows you to come back to whatever you are stressed about with a better perspective.  

Get off the Screens 

Read a book, walk your dog, do anything BUT sit on your laptop or phone when you are stressed. I know that many times it is necessary to be on those things when you are working or doing school, but if you can take an appropriate amount of breaks to space out your technology use. This trick is one that I have definitely noticed the effects of, after taking a break from the screen time I feel refreshed and ready to tackle whatever problem that I am facing.  

Plan A Trip 


Even if you can't actually go on a trip, plan one !!! It's so fun, gives you something to look forward to, and gets you out of your head. Pick a destination and browse photos, things to do, places to stay. Sometimes we need to recharge and get a change of scene, and even if you can't do it at that moment, plan it out and get excited. A great place to do this is on Pinterest, just type in the city and the time of year and there are tons of pictures to get your dreamin about your destination! 

Hope these methods help you destress and have a better week <3