100 Tricks To Help You De-Stress

100 Tricks To Help You De-Stress

Who doesn't get stressed every now and then? Between work worries ("My deadline is when?!") and personal pressures ("Whose turn is it to pick up the kids?"), it may feel like you're always on the brink of being totally overwhelmed. The key is knowing when it's happening -- and being proactive about putting an end to it.

Luckily, there are a lot of ways to keep those stressors in check. In honor of Stress Awareness Day, we rounded up 100 expert and research-backed ways to relax, whether you have five minutes, five hours or five weeks. So long, stress!

  1. Write your worries down in a journal.
  2. Peel an orange. Studies show the smell of citrus can help reduce stress.
  3. Read a book for six minutes.
  4. Eat an avocado. The monounsaturated fats and potassium in the superfood can lower blood pressure.
  5. Take a walk in green space.
  6. Hang out with your BFF.
  7. Spend a few minutes focusing on your breath.
  8. Take a power nap.
  9. Bring your dog to work. Research suggests having Fido in the office can lower stress levels throughout the day.
  10. Listen to Mozart.
  11. Try some aromatherapy. One 2009 study found it's an effective stress-relief technique, especially for high school students.
  12. Let out a laugh.
  13. Get a massage.
  14. Give someone a big hug.
  15. Belt it out at karaoke...
  16. ...Or sing in your church choir.
  17. Do a small project or craft.
  18. Take up knitting. Research shows the activity puts your brain in a state of flow similar to the one achieved through meditation.
  19. Speaking of which, try a little mindfulness meditation.
  20. Have sex.
  21. Unsubscribe from all of those promotional emails.
  22. Kiss a loved one.
  23. Call your mom.
  24. Do a progressive muscle relaxation exercise.
  25. Try the "chocolate meditation" technique. This allows you to fully savor the sweet treat. Instructions here.
  26. chocolate

  27. Take an email vacation. (Bonus: It also makes you more productive.)
  28. Forgive someone.
  29. Think about something you're grateful for.
  30. Exercise. Research shows it helps boost the body's ability to handle stress.
  31. Be mindful of how you deal with frustration during an argument.
  32. Drink black tea.
  33. Power down that smartphone for a few minutes.
  34. Walk the walk. Research shows if you carry yourself like a happy person, you'll feel happier, too.
  35. Drink some orange juice.
  36. Chew gum.
  37. Reflect on what (and who) is important in your life.
  38. Eat foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids. Bring on the salmon!
  39. Tap into your religious beliefs.
  40. Look into a less stressful job.
  41. Live in Salt Lake City (or just take a visit). It was named the least-stressed city in the country in 2014.
  42. Walk or bike to work.
  43. Listen to soothing nature sounds.
  44. Eat a bowl of oatmeal.
  45. Give acupuncture a try.
  46. Flash a smile at someone.
  47. Do some guided imagery exercises.
  48. Get a plant for your house or your desk.
  49. Let yourself have a good cry.
  50. Eat some dark chocolate.
  51. Get in touch with your inner yogi. Try one these yoga poses, specifically geared toward reducing anxiety.
  52. meditation

  53. Say no. You can do anything, but not everything.
  54. Have an orgasm.
  55. Take a laughter yoga class.
  56. Think positive thoughts.
  57. Dance it out. Not only does it reduce stress, it can also boost your memory.
  58. Take a warm bath.
  59. Surround yourself with the scent of pine...
  60. ...Or the aroma of vanilla.
  61. Float in water.
  62. Sleep. Not only is it crucial to zapping stress, it's key to your daily happiness. "When we're exhausted, we drag ourselves through the day instead of enjoying the day," HuffPost president and editor-in-chief Arianna Huffington once said.
  63. De-clutter your home or your desk.
  64. Become a morning person. (Or at least embrace the morning.)
  65. Spend time around horses.
  66. Focus on one task at a time.
  67. Pay attention to your surroundings.
  68. If you're a smoker, quit.
  69. Watch 3-D videos of trees. (Really!)
  70. Go to the beach.
  71. Distance yourself from stressful people in your life.
  72. Repeat a positive affirmation. Looking for a few examples? Try these.
  73. Choose not to wait in line.
  74. Spend time with the person you're in love with.
  75. Drink a cup of green tea.
  76. Feel free to ignore your boss while you're on vacation.
  77. Embrace aging.
  78. laughing

  79. Try a "mood monitoring" exercise. Find tips on how to do it here.
  80. Take a break from social media.
  81. Use a little foul language (in the right company).
  82. Share a meal with a friend.
  83. Let out a deep sigh...
  84. ...Or a primal scream.
  85. Make a silly face.
  86. Close your eyes, even for just a few moments. (But don't do it while you're driving.)
  87. Brush your hair.
  88. Do something nice for someone else. Good karma and less stress? Win.
  89. Give yourself some quiet time.
  90. Write your thoughts on a piece of paper, then physically throw them out.
  91. Stare at the color blue.
  92. Look at old photographs.
  93. Set "stress boundaries." If someone -- or something -- is starting to stress you out, step away from the situation.
  94. Go for a run.
  95. Color a picture. This activity isn't just for kids!
  96. Pet your dog or cat.
  97. Look out the window.
  98. Try a de-stressing app. Programs like Headspace, Calm and our own GPS for the Soul are designed to reduce stress.
  99. Use your imagination and look at your life like scenes in a movie.
  100. Count to 10, then count backward.
  101. Spend a little time in the sun. (Just wear your SPF!)
  102. Take a lunch break away from your desk.
  103. If your stress becomes unmanageable or overwhelming, consider seeing a therapist.

Before You Go

Positive Affirmations: 10 De-Stressing Phrases That Help Put Life Into Perspective


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