What keeps you up better at night than good ol' stress or anxiety? Nothing - and what's the advice you get? "Don't worry so much." Not very helpful. The American Psychological Association conducted a Stress in America survey and found that on a ten-point scale, - ten being the highest - adults in the U.S. are only at a 4.9 in terms of stress levels, reported Psychology Today.
The survey narrowed the most common types of stress Americans were experiencing down to money, work, family, health concerns and general economy conditions. However - stress isn't all bad news. In fact, the source explained that stress can be good - it acts as a motivator to get things done. Without stress, you probably wouldn't try so hard at work - or even show up at all. Essentially, it makes us accountable.
But because stress does exist, you probably want to learn how to cope with it. Stress is draining on the body - it can even lead to depression, physical health issues or other negative mental health conditions.
If you're looking for real strategies for coping with stress and anxiety, look no further. Here are some quick tips and tricks to help you relax:
1. Watch Your Diet
The Anxiety and Depression Association of America explained senior nutrition is extremely important - eating well balanced meals three times a day will help reduce stress or anxiety. Try to cut out processed foods and get plenty of fruits and vegetables. On the other hand, watch what beverages you're consuming as well. Alcohol and caffeine have a tendency to stir up anxiety that can lead to a panic attack
2. Don't Keep It Bottled Up
Talking out the problems that stress you out will help you feel better, explained the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. If you're trying to figuring out a particular issue, sometimes talking it out can help you hear the solution - even without needing the advice of someone else. Getting your problems off your chest however, will instantly make you feel better. One of the questions you should ask yourself is, "Is my problem solvable?" If it's something out of your control try your best to let it go, worrying about issues that haven't happened and might not happen aren't worth the stress.
Find someone you trust to confide in, whether that be a friend, family member, pastor, or even seeking professional medical help. The important part to recognize here, is if you need that extra step. Your friends and family might not have the answer, so going to a therapist or other type of counselor will be a better solution for you. Just don't be afraid to ask for help.
3. Get A Good Night Sleep
You might find a sleeping tip challenging as it's often stress and anxiety that keeps you up at night, but it's an important rule. The ADAA explained that if you are especially stressed out, your body needs the extra rest to to deal with the anxiety. If anything, it will help clear your mind and give you a fresh perspective on how you can tackle your worry the next morning. Before you go to bed, instead of over thinking your problem, just ask yourself what you can do to make it better, then try to fall asleep. In the morning, you might just wake up with the answer!
4. Keep A Worry Journal
HelpGuide.org found that keeping a worry journal can be beneficial for relieving stress similar to the way talking about your problems does. Every time you experience some type of worry, record it in your journal. After a while, the source explained, you might start to notice patterns that you can act on accordingly to help you deal with that stress in the future.
5. Exercise More
And of course, don't forget to get a regular exercise routine together. The ADAA explained that at least two and a half hours of moderate-intensity activity can do wonders for your anxiety woes, so get out there!
Source: Sunrise Senior Living