Stress is one of the factors of addictions and mental health disorders. When it comes to an alcohol or drug addiction, stress can cause someone to abuse these substances. In addition, if someone is struggling with high-stress levels, they may use drugs or alcohol to cope with that stress. Some people who have mental health disorders such as PTSD will abuse drugs or alcohol, as well. The truth is that stress isn’t just a 6 letter word. The damage it can do is extreme.
If you struggle with high-stress levels, it is crucial that you know how to cope with it in healthy ways. Here at Harmony Recovery Center NC, we have treatment programs that can help with overcoming addictions and mental health disorders. In all our treatment programs we teach our clients how to manage, cope with and reduce stress. For today, hopefully, these 5 tips can help you to do the same in your life.
1. Creating Healthy Routines
One of the best ways to cope with and prevent stress is to create healthy routines. Studies show that routines can help provide structure in daily life. When people have a structure in their life, they are less likely to stray from healthy living habits. They are less likely to feel overwhelmed, stressed or anxious.
If you don’t currently have healthy routines in your life, some of the tips to create them include:
- Make a list of things you need to do from day to day
- Write down hobbies and other things you enjoy doing
- Choose a few times during the day to give yourself breaks
- Write down things you do for other people
Now that you have these lists, you can use them to create morning, afternoon, and evening routines. If you strive better with hourly schedules, you can even make your routines into schedules. When you follow through with the routines regularly, you will find your stress levels are lower and more under control.
2. Exercise Can Knock the Stress Out
Did you know it has been proven that exercise can help to knock stress out? There are many different ways that this works. For one thing, when someone exercises it boosts the positive, natural chemicals in their body that increase happiness. As that happens, the negative thoughts and feelings are reduced or disappear, as well.
If you don’t currently exercise regularly, there are some tips to make it more of a habit in your life. Some of the best tips for doing this include:
- Start small (even a 5 minute walk can help to lower stress levels)
- Choose exercises that are easy to do, so you are more likely to stick to them
- Find a fitness partner (someone who also needs to knock stress out of their life)
If you are feeling stressed at any given time, get up and exercise. You might be surprised at how quickly this helps to lower your stress.
3. Meditate the Stress Away
Have you ever done meditation? If not, this may be something that you want to start doing to keep your stress levels down or to reduce stress or anxiety when you have it. Research shows that people who meditate are also less likely to have high-stress levels in the first place.
If you haven’t been meditating regularly, some tips to get you started in doing this are:
- Use online guided meditation videos to help you learn different techniques
- Add meditation to your daily routines (morning and evening, if possible)
- Listen to meditations through an app on your smartphone
If you start meditating regularly, it can help to prevent stressful feelings and help you to stay in control of your emotions, as well.
4. Have Fun Regularly
Fun shouldn’t just be a 3 letter word that happens a few times a year. Many adults forget that having fun is something that life should be about. Yes, you may have to work or take care of other responsibilities. However, you should have fun regularly. It can help to make life more enjoyable and keep negative feelings, such as stress at bay.
There are numerous ways that you can have fun on a regular basis such as:
- Calling a friend and making jokes
- Listen to comedy online or go to a comedian’s event
- Play games with your family
These are just a few of the many ways that you can enjoy your life more. By doing these things, it will be easier to work through the tougher times in life, helping to keep stress levels lower, as well.
5. Get Help and Support
Sometimes, stressful times can be tough to break out of. Have you been abusing alcohol or drugs or diving into self-destructive behaviors to run away from stress? Maybe you have been more stressed because of an addiction or mental health disorder. No matter what the case might be, it is important to know that you can get help to lower your stress levels, overcome addiction, and treat a mental health disorder.