Stress Coping Tips

Having stress is not necessarily bad, but you need to be aware of your sources of stress and have a way to cope.
   Take care of yourself.

Exercise at least three times a week. Exercise can relieve tension and put you in a better mood. The body makes "stress hormones" that help us deal with stressful situations. These stress hormones can lead to health problems if they are allowed to build up. Exercise helps bring stress hormones back to normal levels.

Eat well. Good nutrition can improve your mood and your ability to handle stress.

Get enough rest, but don't stay in bed to avoid problems. You'll just end up with more stress.

Try to avoid using caffeine, cigarettes, or alcohol as a way of dealing with stress. These may make you feel better for a while, but in the long run, they will cause you more stress than they're worth. They can also lead to health problems.

Be sure to schedule some "quiet time" for yourself. Use this time to do something you enjoy, such as reading or listening to music, and don't let anything intrude on it.
   Talk to a friend or family member.

Even if you like to deal with your problems alone, don't let yourself become isolated from friends and family.
   Simplify your life

Set priorities for yourself. Organize your time so that you spend it on what is most important to you.

Get rid of clutter. This goes for the extra papers on your desk, and also the extra commitments that take up your time but are not meaningful to you.

Learn to say "no."

Don't try to do everything yourself. If someone else can do it, then delegate!
   Learn to recognize situations that are stressful for you.

When you get stressed, press the "pause" button. Step back from the situation and take a deep breath. Then use your own personal coping style, along with the tips above, to deal with the situation.

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