8 Simple, Free Stress Management Activities That Will Make You More Productive

By: | February 20, 2018 | Tags: ,

Could you benefit from a few simple stress management activities?

Couldn’t we all?

Is your stress causing you to be unproductive?

Today’s guest author Carol James offers 8 ways you can easily reduce stress. The tips are simple, quick to implement, and free.

Carol even lists her stress management activities in order of difficulty from the easiest to the hardest.

I found all her tips easy to follow. You will too.

8 Effective Stress Management Activities

by Carol James

What is Stress?

According to the American Institute of Stress,  there is actually no single definition of stress that everyone would agree on. Stress is a subjective feeling, what is stressful for one person may be pleasurable or have little effect on others and we all react to stress differently.

In order to have a working definition, we could, however, say this:

Stress is a subjective feeling that puts us at the mercy of our anxious self. It causes a fight-or-flee reaction in our body that in the long run is unhealthy, and that may be destructive to our mind and body.

This definition may not be perfect, but it is good enough for us.

Today’s high-speed, hard-competition society, with its incredible information overflow, causes stress in people. Burnout is an extreme syndrome of stress. We all probably know people who have gone through such a period.

If you are too stressed, your time management will suffer. Luckily there are many ways of keeping stress under control.

8 free, effective, simple stress management activities

Stress Management Activities: How to Keep Stress Under Control

I have a 7-part approach to stress management. It consists of the following parts:

The techniques below all represent different approaches to the same thing. There is no single right or wrong way. They are all useful and you should use what works best for you.

Let’s dig a little deeper into the different approaches.

Personal productivity skills and time management are what most of this post is about. When your productivity is on a level where you know that you perform efficiently, you will experience less stress.

From here on, the stress management activities are in an ease-of-implementation order:

Physical activities and doing sports are beneficial in many ways. Physical exercise releases built-up tension. It also releases hormones that make you feel good.  A fit body helps your mind stay focused and it also can handle stress longer.

Doing sports also forces you to be in the now, which makes it impossible to worry about things on your mind. This gives your mind a possibility to relax.

Journaling (writing a diary) is an excellent way of learning to know yourself better. It can also work more acutely; if something is stuck in your mind a good exercise is to write it down and just discuss the matter in your diary for 10-20 minutes. You don’t even have to come to a conclusion. Still, it will calm you down. Read more about journaling for stress relief.

Meditation may to some of you sound esoteric. Nevertheless, I recommend trying it. You may also only use a relaxation CD (or Mp3). Meditation calms down the whirlwind of thoughts in your head. The effect is immediate and done regularly, it will be even stronger. Regular meditation will result in a generally calmer you. But most of us never manage to do it regularly.

Leading a balanced life is about having more than one important thing in your life that you value highly. You should not base your identity merely on your job, income, or family because it is risky. Due to some unexpected event, you could lose your “precious” and due to your one-pillar mindset, that would make you lose your identity too. Instead, you should be living on more fronts than one. This also makes it possible to relate stressful things at, let us say work, against a richer context of things in other areas of your life. Stressful things won’t blow out of proportion.

Leading a balanced life also means that you don’t have any harmful dependencies on alcohol, drugs or let’s say food. Furthermore, it means that you sleep enough. Leading a balanced life is a broad concept, but I think you got the picture.

Conflict resolution skills are one part of social skills. Many times stress and bad feelings are a result of social situations. People problems, as they say. In order to resolve difficult social situations, you need to be able to face reality, the problem, and to lead difficult conversations. Your mindset should not be tuned for avoiding problems. To put it shortly, conflict resolution requires maturity.

Mindfulness (aka. Present Moment Awareness) is a more conscious and generic skill of living in the now. In practice, living in the now means that you are not constantly re-living moments from yesterday or 5 years back… the time you did some grand mistake in your life or some random angst you had in school. We all should stop dwelling on such things and just let go! However, present moment awareness also means that you don’t live too much in the future. It is O.K. to have dreams about your future and to enter that dream every now and then. But it is not O.K. to live a deferred life, where you are holding back on things because “one day” when you will have the perfect moment you will finally do this and that. That “one day” will probably never come, so start doing things you want to now.

By re-living bad moments from the past our body actually reacts partly in the same way that it did during the original experience. This is why you actually can feel the “stress” of uncomfortable things that happened years ago when you think about them later. Our poor bodies are not completely able to differentiate if something really happens now or if a moment is re-lived in the mind. By re-living bad moments, we create bad feelings and vibes in our bodies. This leads to increased stress.

Present moment awareness is a skill. You can learn it too.

 

What now?

If you feel stressed, pick a few practices from above and work on them for a while. This way you will find the ways that suit you the best.

Host blogger’s comments:

Readers, please share so other people can learn these stress management techniques and lead more productive lives.

I look forward to your answers in the comments section. How do you reduce stress? Do you know any stress management activities you can share?

Author bio: Carol James, writer, and editor at Essay Lab

I’m an academic writer at Essay Lab, a great service that provides essay writing help for people. Our objective is to simplify your high school studies and give everyone a possibility of flourishing without having excess strain.

 

Image Source: https://pixabay.com/ 

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    • Janice Wald | at 12:54 pm

      Hi Emenike,
      Thanks for writing me this week. I never thought of stress as subjective until I read your comments.
      I agree with you. What causes one person stress may not stress another person at all.
      Janice

  1. Ryan Biddulph | at 6:50 am

    Meditation, mindfulness and yoga are 3 of my secrets to happiness and blogging success. Folks wonder how I do it. I spend a good deal of time in quiet daily. In the moment everything is possible. You are open. Love exists, unlike the illusory fear people cower to when spending too much time in their mind and not enough time in their heart. If you want to become highly successful, happy, and largely stress free, meditation, yoga and mindfulness are 3 keys. Toss in daily exercise and you are good to go.

    Ryan
    Ryan Biddulph recently posted…Why Write Multiple eBooks for Your Blog Readers?My Profile

    • Janice Wald | at 12:57 pm

      Hi Ryan,
      Thanks for the tips. Even though it’s still winter, I’ve resumed walking my dog. (I know I’m a Californian, I shouldn’t get to complain, but everything is relative.) I used to make the excuse I’m too busy blogging to exercise. Now I realize the importance of exercise, both for me and my dog.
      Janice

  2. Smart Blogger | at 3:03 pm

    As a blogger I used to less sleep, maybe this triggers stress. After reading this article, I found the solution to relieving stress. Really amazing tips!

    Thank you.

    • Janice Wald | at 12:58 pm

      Hi Smart Blogger,
      I am so glad my guest author’s post has helped you to relieve stress. I walked my dog this week and it definitely helped. I will keep it up! Thanks for writing.
      Janice

  3. Freddy G. Cabrera | at 7:25 pm

    Hey Carol!

    I believe stress is just in the mind and it is a product of your way of thinking.

    Of course, it is a challenge to overcome it when you feel it hard. There is nothing wrong with your body when you feel stress, but it does affect the body in the long run.

    I believe stress is a product of overthinking. When you think too much about the future you tend to get stressed out. I don’t think most people realize they are under control over the stress and not the other way around. You actually can control when and how much you are stressed.

    What I do to help me combat stress when it seems to be creeping up in my mind, is remember this simple fact – it is a product of my mind and my mind only. I can control it, it can’t control me. So, what do I do? I meditate and go to the gym to clear my mind for a little bit. I also like to go for long nature walks as a form of meditation. I’ve realized the real power of motion.

    Motion creates emotions.

    Whenever you feel stressed, get off your butt and do any type of physical activity that will also occupy your mind. The blood pump will help you clear your mind and live in the moment a bit more. The more you practice this the better you will get at pushing stress to the side as soon as it tries to get ya! 😉

    Thank you for sharing your tips here!

    My best regards! 😀
    Freddy G. Cabrera recently posted…How To Drive Traffic To Your Blog Post – Fast (Download My Traffic Cheat Sheet For FREE)My Profile

    • Janice Wald | at 1:01 pm

      Hi Freddy,
      This is beautiful! Have you ever blogged about this topic? You should copy these comments and blog about how people can relieve stress. I learned it’s not a competitive SEO keyword.
      Janice

  4. Neeranjan | at 9:20 pm

    A Blogger always needs to be free from stress and keep their mind in a relaxed always. There are many ways to do that and this article explains the factors for being productive very clearly. Good topic choosen by the author.

    • Janice Wald | at 1:02 pm

      Hi Neeranjan,
      I am writing a guest post about productivity tips. After reading your comments, I realize stress management techniques boost productivity. Thanks for the realization.
      Janice

  5. Battulal Jewellers | at 2:39 am

    If one could learn meditation and always try to do on time, then one can beat any kind of stress.
    You always comes with information loaded article, keep going, keep helping people.

  6. Elvis Michael | at 10:21 am

    This is nothing short of excellent, Carol.
    I normally notice a huge drop in productivity when im stressed. Some people thrive under pressure, but im certainly not one of them.

    The one thing that keeps me going is a consistent, disciplined schedule. Im not always perfect with it (none of us are) but if i get things done on a timely fashion, I find myself breathing easy and without guilt. Prolonged productivity soon follows 🙂

    Elvis
    Elvis Michael recently posted…3 Easy Ways to Skyrocket Earnings from a Single ClientMy Profile

    • Janice Wald | at 1:08 pm

      Hi Elvis,
      I found your comments interesting. You are right. Some people perform best under pressure while other people perform best adhering to a strict schedule. I wish I could adhere to a strict schedule but happily, I think I perform well under pressure. Thanks for writing.
      Janice

  7. DD George | at 10:56 am

    I love meditation!
    At most times when I feel stressed, I take break, Settle myself in a place which is quiet, Sit down or assume Lotus position and just count my exhalation. Five minutes of this is already quite good enough. The benefits range from being relaxed, to being wide awake and energized and staying in focus. Meditation Works wonders for me and helps my productivity. Thanks for this wonderful Post Janice!

  8. amisha | at 11:25 pm

    Nice things written and it is really helping me while i worked long hours. Theses stuff are very impressive so i just recommend to all those people who worked long hours because good health always provide more productive hours.

  9. Parul Singh | at 11:27 pm

    Stress is the root of the health problem. Many people who work for the hour they are normally getting frusteted because they are stressed.
    I think music also works as meditation when I am stressed then I listen to music in alone and after this my mood is okay.
    But After reading your article I will try meditation. thank you for this informative article!!!!

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