We’ve all suffered at the hands of an overly busy week, where stress reigns supreme, and we’re left feeling frazzled, rattled and every other word synonymous with anxious. But instead of falling victim to hectic schedules and playing catch-up, it’s important to beat those signs of stress before they define your life. That’s why we came up with this list of ways to beat madness at its own game “ or at least signs of stress.
One of the first things to suffer in the midst of trials and tribulations, sleep is both the cause of and solution to most stress-induced freak-outs. First, stress and anxiety levels are likely to go up if you’re sleep deprived, and if you’re anxious and stressed, you’re probably not going to sleep. Thus, instead of tossing and turning after breaking away from the laptop, give yourself an hour beforehand for chamomile tea, a good book and much-needed space from your computer. By making your sleeping space one of calm, you’ll be more likely to get those six, seven or even eight-ish hours and keep your head out of the work game.
Most of us are familiar with the effects of stress on our digestive systems “ especially if we’re sufferers of IBS or other stomach issues. Thus, before you hit the point where you’re popping Immodium or helping yourself to a bag of prunes, make sure you’re giving yourself time to eat healthy, well-balanced meals despite the temptation to eat fast food for convenience sake. It’s possible to take a working lunch alongside a salad, sandwich or last night’s leftovers “ but make sure you’re not eating too fast (or not eating at all) to keep your stomach happy (and to avoid an undoubtedly stressful bathroom situation).
The pitfalls of procrastination have staked their claim on many of us several thousand times over, but while putting off work can lead to a meltdown at the computer, a meltdown at the computer can often lead to more procrastination. (Note the pattern of vicious cycles.) The first step? Don’t wait until the last minute to start, work on or finish a project. The second? Spread your work out over a few days so it doesn’t seem too overwhelming when you get down to it. Before you know it, you’ll have your assignment wrapped up, and can cross something off what’s likely an overwhelming to-do list. The key: apply this to everything else on that list as well.