Ten Stress Prevention Tips

1.Choose

Stress is our subjective response to unwanted demand – so if we choose to do something – like the washing up, shopping, or a job – it will be less stressful. Also, remember, staying where you are is also a choice.

2.Manage expectations

Expectation levels are usually formed in our childhood. "You should be getting 100% in that exam!" can set up unreasonably high expectation of self, which we project onto others too, and are often striving for perfection or being let down. Unrealistically low expectations can be protective but set a low-mood or low sense of self.

3.Reduce caffeine

Caffeine can increase our stress levels, so try to reduce your coffee and tea intake or preferably switch to water or herbal teas.

4. Join in

Isolation and loneliness can also be stressful; feeling lonely in a crowd, when you don't choose to be can be stressful. Join in with your local community, join that local club and follow a passion with others.

5. Be time boundaried

"I will just finish my emails" can mean working beyond what is reasonable for us humans. Work to a certain time and then stop. How good is your work at midnight when you have been working all day? Use some triggers to stop work – that might be a change of clothes or shutting the car door when arriving home.

6.Learn to relax fully

We spend too man hours in "fight or flight" nowadays. Taking up yoga, tai-chi, or simply learning some breathing

exercises can bring us down into a relaxed alpha state – which is a great state for the mind and body.

7. Eat well & exercise

Remember diet is a four letter word. Eating authentically without stressing over your food and engaging in meaningful exercise will reduce stress. You don't burn fat off in a stressful state and exercise is about movement – (choose to move!)

8. Be kind to yourself

Learning to be kind to yourself and stop beating yourself up is vital to reducing your stress levels. You can learn to go easy on all of us other fragile humans too!

9. Get help

If you are struggling, don't be afraid to get help. Find your local counsellor at www.bacp.co.uk. It is a sign of strength to ask for help when you need it. Listen to your body and it will tell you when you need help (headaches, weariness, IBS, skin problems etc..)

10. Avoid SMOG

Are you still following rules that someone set out many years ago? If you find yourself using Should Must Ought or Got to, ask yourself (a) Where does this come from? (b) Is it true? and (c) Is this being kind to myself?