Stress is one thing we can’t avoid dealing with in everyday life in the 21st century but knowing how to shut it down instantly can immensely improve our lives.
Luckily for you, you don’t have to wait for minutes or even hours to shut down stress. Here are a number of 5-second strategies that can help you.
Take A Deep Breath
Dealing with sudden stress—a phone call with bad news or an argument with your spouse can trigger a cascade of physical and mental symptoms that can be hard to stop. The first thing to do is pay attention to your breathing pattern, and make an effort to start taking slow, deep breaths as stress relievers.
Breathing can change how you feel in the moment because emotions and breathing are closely connected. A revealing research study showed that different emotional states are associated with distinct respiration patterns.
Deep breathing gets more oxygen to your brain and may lower levels of the stress hormone cortisol.
Correct Your Posture
Slumping can be an outward sign of stress and bad posture actually puts more physical stress on your body. People who are overly stressed often display their worries in their body carriage.
Those who are weighed down with stress commonly have a poor posture or struggle with aches and pains in their body. They often slouch when sitting or concave their body inwards with rounded shoulders as they go about their business under the weight of the burdens they carry.
Taking a few seconds when you feel stressed to check your posture and sit up straight can help you feel better. Studies show that poor posture is related to anxiety, depression, helplessness, and irritability, so keeping your chin up and shoulders back will help.
Check Your Thoughts
When your thoughts begin to spin out of control during a stressful moment, stop and change your thinking. That way, you can direct how your body will respond. If you’re stressed about something you fear happening, look at the positive side.
Also, instead of asking why something is happening, ask what you can do to fix it. Moving forward instead of being lost in the circle of worries and “whys” helps to reduce stress.
Say Thank You
When stress attacks, it can feel like your whole world is crashing down. Remind yourself what’s good in your life with a quick by being thankful.
Studies show gratitude techniques like counting your blessings can be a significant stress reducer. Research reports that those who utilize daily gratitude reflections have higher levels of positive emotions, life satisfaction, vitality, optimism, and lower levels of depression and stress.
Reminding yourself of the good things in life can put stress in perspective. Cultivating an optimistic mindset can help you maintain a positive mood.
Say Some Inspirational Words
Words could be great stress relievers. To quell sudden stress, repeat a phrase from which you draw power and strength. Think positively about releasing what is bothering you by repeating a positive phrases that uplifts you such as, ‘I am at peace,’ ‘All is well,’ ‘I love and believe in myself fully,’ or “This too shall pass.”
Repeating a mantra is actually a type of meditation that can make you more resilient to stress. You can place reminders of your mantras near the places you tend to get stressed, like your work space.