Modern life is something of overwhelming complexity and continuous sources of stress. While many of us are content to accept this as reality, it should be remembered that stress is majorly harmful to your long-term health. In fact, according to mayoclinic.org, stress can result in a range of symptoms including headaches, fatigue, sleep problems, chest pain, and stomach issues.
Some degree of stress is indeed unavoidable, but that doesn’t mean that it is unmanageable. By taking a few simple steps you can help protect against how much stress affects you, to better your future mental and physical health.
Exhaustion is a common component of stress, and therein lies a major problem. To mitigate more exhaustion, you have to first expend additional effort. This might seem self-defeating, but the idea is that a little work now can save you a lot of work later.
The first part we want to look at is planning for unexpected costs. It is true that you cannot predict what form this will take, that is what unexpected means after all, but you can help cover your bases. Develop contingency plans, and have a plan B for anything you do. This is most important for the bigger things, but it can also pay off for smaller activities and parts of your life.
Pet ownership is a great example of this. Pets can be great for stress, but sudden illness for our little friends can be a major source of turmoil. Take a few minutes to plan out which vet you will visit in an emergency, and be sure to insure your animal to protect them. This is easier than ever before, as websites like bestpetinsurance.com can help narrow down many choices and options for your vet. These even list the most important features like payout caps and 24/7 helplines, so you can quickly find exactly what you want.
Exercise and relaxation
Another huge component of stress reduction are the dual pursuits of exercise and relaxation. Again, it might seem counterintuitive, but by expending energy to exercise you can massively improve your overall health. This can result in more everyday energy, leaving you more engaged in daily activities.
Relaxation can mean time to yourself, but it also includes often overlooked aspects such as meditation. Helpful website pocketmindfulness.com has some simple guides to get you started. Remember this isn’t just pseudoscience, as meditation has been scientifically proven to have positive effects on mental health.
The final important part of this equation is the adoption of a support system wherever possible. Having close friends and family who you can open up to, even if just to listen, can go a long way in helping us let off steam.
This step can be difficult, especially if your problems are more personal and you wish to keep them anonymous. In this case, don’t forget about the helpfulness of dedicated support groups. Services like psychologytoday.com can help track down relevant support groups in your area, otherwise, general Google searches can be effective tools.
Effort is cumulative
No one solution here is going to be the magic panacea to stress. Together, however, and over time, these can combine for real and permanent change. Better physical and mental health is a path we all walk, and some have a rockier road than others. Take the time you need, reflect on your failures and success, and you’ll be all the better for it.