Keep Calm and Stay Cool: 8 Ways to Overcome Stress and Anxiety

Being constantly pressed for time saps your energy. You are feeling overwhelmed by your work and routine life. You get stressed out when you get caught up in things over which you have no control…

If you want to stay calm in stressful situations, here are eight quick steps:

Video Guide

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1. Take a deep breath

When you're in a stressful situation that makes you want to rush, take a minute to stop what you're doing and do the following:

  • Take five deep breaths in and five deep breaths out (your belly should come forward with each inhale).
  • Consider how much stress is leaving your body with each exhale.
  • Smile. Fake it if necessary. It's difficult to be grumpy when you have a silly grin on your face.
  • If necessary, repeat the preceding steps at work or at home every few hours.

2. Take a deep breath and relax

After your breathing session, do a quick body scan to identify any tight or tense areas. Jaw clenched? Shoulders that are rounded? Is there anything else bothering you?

To encourage total relaxation, gently touch or massage any tense areas of your body. It may help to imagine yourself in a relaxing environment, such as a beach, hot tub, or nature trail.

3. Take your time chewing

Slow down at the dinner table if you want to lose weight and learn to be patient. Shoveling your food down as quickly as possible is a surefire way to consume more than you need to (and find yourself with a bellyache).

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Be a mindful eater who considers the flavor, texture, and aroma of each dish. Slowly chew while attempting to guess all of the ingredients used to prepare your dish.

Chewing slowly will also help you avoid those pesky late-night cravings that creep up on you after work.

4. Let Go As cliche as it may sound, this technique is extremely effective

What appears to be the end of the world right now?

It isn't. Promise.

Stressing and worrying about your current situation will not help you because you are already in it, so let it go.

It is difficult to let go, so here is a guide to assist you: 21 Things to Do When It's Difficult to Let Go

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5. Have Fun on the Road

Concentrating solely on the end result can quickly become exhausting.

Are you pursuing a big, audacious goal that will take a lot of time and patience? Divide it into several mini-goals so that you have several reasons to celebrate.

Stop obsessing over negative thoughts. Giving yourself positive feedback on a regular basis will help you develop patience, stay encouraged, and find more joy in the process of achieving your goals.

6. Consider the Big Picture

Take a deep breath the next time your stress level rises and ask yourself:

Will this make a difference to me?

  • What about next week?
  • What about next month?
  • What about next year?
  • In ten years?

No, it will not.

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I bet most of what stresses you out won't matter in a week, or even the next day.

Stop agonizing over things you can't change because it's only making you feel worse.

7. Stop Expecting Perfection from Yourself

It's okay if you're not perfect. I'll show you a dirty liar if you show me someone who claims to be perfect.

Demanding perfection from yourself (or anyone else) will only cause you stress because it is simply not possible.

Check out this article to learn why perfectionism is bad for you: How Perfectionism Secretly Ruins Your Life

Every day, practice patience.

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Here are a few simple ways you can practice patience every day to improve your ability to remain calm and cool under pressure:

Get in the longest line at the grocery store the next time you go.
Instead of using the drive-through at your bank, go inside.
Take a long walk through a quiet park or along a secluded trail.

Final Thoughts

It is possible to remain calm in stressful situations; all you need is some daily practice.

Deep breaths and mindful eating are two simple ways to train your brain to be more patient. However, changing your perspective on a situation and remaining positive are the most important factors in remaining calm when you are overwhelmed and stressed.

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You have heard it all before: "Live life to the fullest", "follow your dreams", "be who you are" and "if it is meant to be, it will be". These are all wonderful quotes that are meant to help you live a happy life but they miss the point. Our lives are interconnected with each other and with the world.

No matter how hard you think you try, there’s always going to be a certain level of stress in your life. And when stress gets out of hand, it can start to negatively affect your life. But this doesn’t have to be the case. There are some easy steps you can take to improve your life in the long run, and we’ve found a few that can help you enjoy a better life and get rid of stress.

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