1. Pull the plug and meditate.
Even if it’s a quick 5 or 10 minutes, escaping from the world for a meditation break can reset your entire mindset. Find a solitary area where you can sit quietly, without the demands of emails, text, bosses, kids or barking dogs. Then deeply inhale, deeply exhale. Repeat until you’ve relaxed your body and cleared your mind of needless clutter.
2. Treat yourself to dark chocolate.
No joke! Research has actually shown to help control blood pressure and lessen stress. Researchers found that eating dark chocolate every day reduced levels of the cortisol hormone — known as the “fight-or-flight” hormone — prevalent among highly stressed people. So keep stress at bay, and do so tastefully.
3. Take a stroll.
Taking a walk clears your head, boosts endorphins and decreases stress hormones. It also gets you out of the stress-inducing environment for a change of scenery. Not only will you get some fresh air, but you’ll return with a fresh perspective.
4. Don’t strive for unattainable.
Trying to do everything PERFECTLY puts unrealistic demands on yourself, which further increases your stress by generating fear you’ll never meet those demands. Sometimes good enough is, well, good enough. Take a cue from artist Salvador Dali: “Have no fear of perfection – you’ll never reach it.”
5. Make a zen playlist.
Music is powerful. Listening to music can be an incredibly effective stress management tool that helps relax both our bodies and minds. Relaxing tones like classical music or nature sounds can help lower your heart rate and increase those feel-good chemicals in your brain. Try creating a playlist of your favorite calming melodies to turn to when you need to reduce your stress quickly and prevent burnout in the long-term.