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• Start with small amounts of activity and build up as you are physically able to. You may face a situation where you will need to turn down an offer or request more than once. Sometimes stepping outside of yourself allows you to think outside the box Abstinence violation effect Definition of Abstinence violation effect and find new solutions. Cultivating your spirituality can give you a greater sense of connection with nature, your community, and the world around you. Finding a spiritual connection in yourself can eliminate loneliness, even in times of solitude.

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Each time you practice, however, you should experience a feeling of relaxation sweeping through your body. Stress is our body’s response to perceived threats and danger. Without a doubt, the last years have been and continue to be challenging (Covid-19, Ukraine war, cost-of-living crisis).

Easy Ways to Manage and Relieve Stress

Stress reduction techniques that utilize mindfulness include meditation and mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT), a type of cognitive behavioral therapy. These benefits seem related to yoga’s effect on your nervous system and stress response. Although coffee has health benefits in moderation, it’s recommended to keep caffeine intake under 400 mg daily, which equals 4–5 cups (0.9–1.2 L) of coffee. Being chronically stressed may lead you to overeat and reach for highly palatable foods, which may harm your overall health and mood. Your diet affects every aspect of your health, including your mental health. If you’re currently inactive, start with gentle activities such as walking or biking.

Exercise, mindfulness, spending time with a pet, minimizing screen time, and getting outside more often are all effective methods. While yoga styles differ, most share a common goal — to join your body and mind by increasing body and breath awareness. Yoga has become a popular method of stress relief and exercise among all age groups. Work on the things that need to get done today, and give yourself chunks of uninterrupted time. Switching between tasks or multitasking can be stressful in itself.

Helplines and services to support your mental health during COVID-19

Research has also found that regular physical activity can protect people against stress and anxiety while also promoting positive emotions. Talking to a friend or family member can be a helpful way to keep your stress levels under control. Plan at least one connection a day – a phone call or a chat with a colleague or friend who you can share experiences with. Consider regular virtual meetings with family and friends to check in on each other. This can be a great source of support during these times. Physical exercise and activity have also reduced stress levels and improved mood and overall wellbeing (Craft & Perna, 2004).

10 ways to cope with stress