Everyone seems to be so stressed lately and it’s understandable, life makes several demands of us all. We have a job to do or a business to run (often both these days), a family to look after, communities we’re expected to contribute something or the other to and other responsibilities we can’t run away from.
With so much to do, it’s easy to forget that you’re important too and you need to take care of yourself.
But if you want to live long enough to enjoy what you’re working for, you can’t afford to neglect your health.
And stress is your health’s number one enemy. If you ignore stress, it will lower your productivity, make you sick and end up costing you a lot.
These good habits will help you reduce stress and live a healthier life:
1. Rest before you’re worn out.
The same way you schedule work, schedule time away from work. Seriously. Take a vacation when you’re supposed to. Don’t defer your rest with the common excuse: “I’m too busy.” Everyone needs a break. Turn on that auto-responder and take some time off. You could be saving your life.
2. Get enough sleep.
Don’t be one of those people who say ridiculous things like “I’ll sleep when I die” and “Sleep is for the weak.” Don’t kid yourself, you need nothing less than seven hours of sleep every night to function at your optimum. The effects of sleep deprivation on your body range from the obvious — excessive yawning and drowsiness, to the severe — depression, suicidal thoughts and a predisposition to heart disease. We’re not trying to scare you, but if you’re not getting enough sleep, it’s going to tell on your health sooner than later. Fix up.
3. Unplug every day.
Your phone can stress you a lot if you allow it to. In this age of endlessly scrolling social media feeds, multiplying chat apps and the accompanying fear of missing out, you can be terrorised by notifications. But not that many things are important and even less things are as urgent as they seem. You don’t have to pick up every call or reply every message immediately. If it’s not urgent and important, don’t interrupt your rest. Stop taking your phone to bed. You can actually turn it off when you need to sleep. The world won’t stop spinning.
Look out for more ways to free yourself in the coming days and contribute to the #FreeYourself conversation on Twitter and Instagram. You can also tell us ways you’ve reduced stress in your life in the comments section below.