- Follow your passion
Your passion could be a skill that you practice, something creative, a new way of living, a dream you are pursuing, or something new you are learning. If it helps you actualize who you really are then spending time on this regularly is going to keep the stress levels down.
- Practice awareness
It doesn’t matter whether you follow tai chi, yoga, meditation, qui gong, breathing work or anything else. So long as it keeps you away from Headmind chatter, grounds you in your body and that you keep on practicing awareness for the here and now.
- Exercise regularly
In my opinion this is the easiest and yet most under-rated stress-buster there is. Even a 15 minute run every day is going to get those endorphin levels up and keep you energised through the day
- Learn to say ‘No’
It constantly amazes me how many people have never learned to use the magic word. It doesn’t matter if you say it nicely, rudely, slowly or fast. Just say it! And the more you say it, the easier it gets.
- Take time out for yourself
My grandfather (who died aged 94) would sit in a darkened room every evening for twenty minutes. It worked for him….
- Do 75% of what you ‘have’ to do today and leave the rest
This one is based on a bit of research. Which showed that a lot of busy, stressed people don’t make effective use of their time because they waste it in worrying about all the things they haven’t done yet. Or they rush the job and have to do it all over again. Get the drift?
- Surround yourself with people who care about you
That means people who don’t place extra demands on you and who give out rather than take. If you don’t know anyone that fits that profile then get a dog.
- Cut down on routine
More research shows that too much routine can be as stressful as trying to do too much. If routine is unavoidable then balance it out by adding in more variety before and after.
- Zone out the worries
Listening to negative self-talk every day will eventually drive you crazy. Practicing an awareness discipline that tunes it out is good to do. Keeping busy on activities that give you no time to listen to it is good too. Learn, also to see the worries as fantasies rather than predictions.
- Be 20% more honest with people than you were before
Putting on appearances and lying about what is going on is draining. It’s also a powerful, and very subtle, stress-builder. Get rid of the baggage by regularly telling the people around you the way things really are from time to time.