November 1, 2020

5 Tips to Cope with Stress and Boost Your Mental Health

During these challenging times, you may be feeling many different emotions: you may be stressed, saddened, or angered as a reaction to events of the past few months or recent days.

The effects of chronic stress on your body can be extremely dangerous to your overall health. Some symptoms of stress are:

  • Tension and irritability
  • Fear and anxiety
  • Anger
  • Headaches
  • Loss of appetite
  • Nightmares or difficulty sleeping
  • Mood swings
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Loss of interest in your usual activities, etc.

If you notice any of the above in yourself, here are some valuable tips for coping with stress and boosting your mental health:

1. Care for Your Body

Pick healthy activities and establish a routine to stay focused and feel mentally and physically well. Also, getting enough sleep during the night is essential, as rest is what your body needs to recharge. If you are having trouble sleeping, try going to bed at the same time each night; aromatherapy and music are soothing and helpful tools for a good night's sleep as well. Eating healthy foods and exercising daily are other great ways to boost your mental and physical health.

2. Make Time to Check-In with Yourself During the Day

Sit down or lie down and mentally scan your body. Notice what it’s saying you need at that moment. You may detect a clenched jaw, muscle tension, pain, fatigue, hunger, thirst, rapid breathing, increased heart rate, etc. Tend to your immediate, basic needs and then take a moment to label your current state.

When you’re feeling upset, stressed or anxious, take deep breaths (slowly breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth), stretch and try to meditate. Reflecting on things you’re grateful for can also help you reach and maintain a good mood. Other great self-care activities include riding a bike or taking a walk, calling friends, snuggling with your pet, crafting, taking a hot bath, watching a funny movie or reading a book.

3. Take a Break from All Forms of Media

Constantly reading about current world events can be distressing and mentally draining. Consider taking a couple of days for yourself to relax, recover and reset. Log out of your social media accounts and take a break from reading and watching the news.

4. Stay in Touch with Your Friends and Family

Talk to people you love and trust about how you’re doing. When going through a stressful situation, you may feel the urge to withdraw from your loved ones, but that can only negatively affect your mental health.

5. Practice Mindfulness and Self-Compassion

  • When you’re feeling down, try to be there for yourself like you would for your loved ones. Think of things you would say to them and apply them to yourself. Mindfully accept that the current moment is painful and embrace yourself with kindness and care. Catch yourself when you’re
  • running yourself down and purposefully start doing something you like. For example, play your favorite song and dance around.

    If you or a loved one needs help with this or any other issue, Communicare is here for you. Take a look at our services and don't hesitate to contact us!