10 Ways to Relieve Stress

Sophia Donis, Opinions Editor

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Mental health is very important and is often thrown under the rug in between the craziness of daily activities. It is crucial to take care of your self physically and mentally and take time to decompress and reflect on life. These 10 tips are a great way to help relieve stress and give you the relief you need to make it to the weekend.

  1. Exercise
  • Although no one wants to go out and run 3 miles, exercise lowers your body’s stress hormones which in turn lowers your mental stress. Exercising regularly helps you stay fit while also continuing to lower your stress hormones. Going on Pinterest and finding 30 day abs and squat challenges are an easy way to work out in your bedroom. But if that isn’t for you, jogging around your neighborhood is another great way to relieve stress.
  1. Light a Candle
  • Lighting a candle is a great way to release aromatherapy into your room and let your stress and anxiety levels significantly decrease. Aromatherapy such as lavender, rose and orange, have been proven to help reduce stress levels and help improve sleep as well.
  1. Reduce your Caffeine Intake
  • Caffeine acts as a stimulant and raises your anxiety levels which in turn also raises your stress levels. Although coffee is good in moderation, excess amounts can actually do the opposite of your intention. Instead, opt for infused water to help keep you hydrated and less stressed.
  1. Writing Things Down
  • Writing down a daily to do list, or keeping a weekly calendar of all your tests, homework and after school activities gives you a visual representation of everything you need to get done. By seeing everything you need to do, it helps you take one step at a time and not get so overwhelmed. You can also keep a journal so you have an outlet to write down all your moods and get all your feelings down on paper.
  1. Chew Gum
  • Chewing gum gives your mouth something to do and also improves your focus when you’re studying or trying to concentrate during class. Chewing gum improves blood blow in the brain and increases alertness. A study also showed that chewing gum more frequently reduced people’s stress levels and helped them concentrate.
  1. Surround Yourself with Good Energy
  • Surrounding yourself with friends and family can greatly improve your mood and give you a sense of belonging. Smiling is proven to improve your mood and make yourself feel happier, even when you might not be in the best mood. A study showed that particularly in women, oxytocin, a natural stress reliever was released when spending time with loved ones. If you ever feel like your world is crashing down, text or Facetime your friend and rant away!
  1. Learn to say NO
  • It is very easy to overload your schedule with school, sports, work and family. Sometimes you need to say no to staying out late with friends, and stay home to binge watch Netflix and light a candle. Taking time to just lay in bed and relax is very important and is a great way to relieve stress and get your mind off your busy schedule.
  1. Learn to Avoid Procrastination
  • Doing your homework and projects way before the due date will help eliminate a few things off your plate in the long run. If you constantly push off doing a project, applying for scholarships or leaving your English reading till the last second, your stress levels will sky rocket. Although it is hard to do things way ahead of time, it is good to do long tasks a bit at a time to decrease the amount of work you have to crank out in one sitting. Also try sticking to the unit schedules your teachers give out in order to stay on top of your work.
  1. Hugs
  • Positive physical contact are proven to release oxytocin and lower cortisol to help lower your blood pressure. It also gives you a warm feeling inside and makes you feel safe. By hugging your mom or best friend, it can help you escape from all the stress and give you a sense of inner peace.
  1. Listen to Music
  • Listening to noise machines, calming music, or even a relaxing podcast can help you escape from the crazy world around you and give you time to reflect and calm down. Slow music helps relax your mind and lower your blood pressure in order to help you feel less stressed, Turning on your favorite playlist and jamming out in your bedroom can also make you smile and lower your stress levels.