According to a study conducted by the American Psychological Association, roughly seventy five percent of adults will experience moderate to high levels of stress throughout the course of a month. Stress is something that affects people throughout all aspects of their lives. Approximately eighty percent of people say that they feel stress at work and roughly forty two percent say that they believe the same is true of their co-workers. According to stress.org, forty four percent of Americans believe that that their stress levels have increased significantly over the last five years. One in five people say that they experience symptoms of severe stress, like shaking and heart palpitations.
While it's true that there is no one size fits all approach to stress management, there are a few simple and effective steps you can take throughout your day to help with stress.
The Importance of Exercise
Exercise isn't just a core pillar of leading a healthy lifestyle; it is also one of the best ways to reduce stress. According to the American Psychological Association, even just twenty minutes of moderate activity unlocks an immediate effect in your brain that can reduce your overall stress levels for several hours.
For the best, most long-term results, experts recommend about seventy five minutes of exercise per week. If that isn't possible, twenty to thirty minutes of exercise, as often as possible, may also help a great deal.
Studies have shown that deep breathing exercises are a great way to instantly reduce stress levels. It not only helps you calm down and focus, but it also reduces pressure throughout your body. It can be a helpful way to manage stress, as it's something that you can do from anywhere.
Begin by inhaling slowly through your nose, taking in as much air as possible. Hold that breath for a few seconds, then slowly release. Repeat this process for a few minutes to enjoy instant benefits. Breathing like this may help to increase oxygen in your blood, which can have an immediate calming effect.
Pay Attention to Your Muscles
Even if you aren't necessarily feeling stressed in an obvious way, it's important to look out for some of the more subtle signs and symptoms. Increased stress levels cause your muscles to get tense. Recognizing this early is a great way to reduce your stress levels before they get worse.
If you feel your muscles start to tense up during a particularly stressful situation, try doing some stretches. If you're at home you may also take a warm bath or shower. Massages are also an excellent way to ease tense muscles due to stress.