Stress management is important. Start with healthy habits which include proper nutrition, exercise and enough sleep. Keep a planner so you clearly know what tasks need to be done. On days when there are too many tasks, prioritize, and cross the unimportant ones off the schedule. Learn how to say “no” when people ask you to do things that you don’t have time for. Once you’ve completed something, such as writing a test or handing in a paper, mentally cross it off in your head, so you don’t keep thinking about it. Don’t think about outcomes when you don’t have any more control over them. Stay focused on things you actually have control over. Sometimes stress is created by overthinking.
Slow deep breathing helps your brain release endorphins, which help you manage anxiety. Do 10 slow deep breaths 5 times each day. You’ll notice a more calm feeling. Also monitor your thoughts. We tend to overly exaggerate things when we are stressed. So a simple thing becomes “Oh My God, this is too much, why did this happen……” etc. Instead tell yourself “Oh it’s not so bad, I can deal with this”. Re-frame the situation that’s stressing you out so you’re not making it worse than it actually is.
Slow down a bit and savor the simple good things in your day. Allow yourself to enjoy those pleasures and treasures. Maybe it’s a cup of tea that hits the spot, or maybe it’s a nice warm shower – notice the good feeling that comes with these good moments. If you keep a gratitude journal, your mind will automatically think more positively, so every night take a couple of minutes to write down “what went well today”. Make sure you acknowledge your accomplishments, however small they may be. Our minds tend to be self-critical, which adds to the stress. So tell yourself “I did my best today, good job me!”
Make sure you engage in positive social interactions where you talk to friends and have fun. Sometimes just talking to an understanding person helps get things out of your system, and helps you recharge. Finally, nurture your spiritual side by staying connected with your faith. When you remember that today is just part of a bigger picture, it helps you re-evaluate small things that may feel overwhelming.