It is thought that more people than ever are feeling the effects of stress. Stress can help people thrive in the short-term, but the effects can be severely damaging to mental and physical health over time. According to the Health and Safety Executive, it was the cause of 11.7 million lost workdays in the UK last year.
On National Stress Awareness day, we want to share six simple things that some people find help them to deal with stress. Many of these you’ll already know, but it never hurts to have a reminder. Of course, everyone is different and has different techniques they use to help reduce stress. Let us know your tips in the comments below.
1. Eat well. A healthy balanced diet can help. Plenty of fruit and veg can help to lift your mood and help to reduce your stress levels. Author and mental health campaigner Rachel Kelly is an advocate of this and in her latest book, The Happy Kitchen: Good Mood Food, she shares some delicious sounding recipes designed to keep you calm, boost energy and help you sleep.
2. Exercise. Some people find exercise has a positive effect on stress levels. Having a regular workout as part of your routine can help improve your energy levels and give your mood a boost. In one of our recent blogs, Talking FreELY team member Lauren shared how exercise is a key factor for her own positive mental health.
3. Sleep. We all know that lack of sleep is not good for you but for many people, sleeping well is easier said than done resulting in even higher stress levels. The Royal College of Psychiatrists has some useful information about sleep and tips to improve your night.
4. Nature. Getting outside in the fresh air is another way to help reduce stress, many people find it helps them to feel more positive. The mental health charity Mind has some interesting information about ecotherapy programmes which aim to improve mental health through outdoor activities.
5. Breathing. Ok, so we do this all the time but taking time to think about your breathing can have a positive effect. Mindfulness is a technique which is growing popularity and one way to help you to focus. Ely Mindfulness centre will be hosting a mindfulness zone at the next Talking FreELY pop-up cafe this Saturday, 4th November if you want to come and try it for yourself.
6. Talk about it. At Talking FreELY we’re advocates of the positive benefits of talking. Pick up the phone to a friend or family member and of course, pop in and chat to our talking volunteers at our event this Saturday at Ely Cathedral conference centre from 9.30.