Be active

Exercise won’t make your stress disappear, but it will reduce some of the emotional intensity that you’re feeling, clearing your thoughts and letting you deal with your problems more calmly. 

Take control

The act of taking control is in itself empowering, and it’s a crucial part of finding a solution that satisfies you and not someone else. Professor Cooper says:

“If you remain passive, thinking, ‘I can’t do anything about my problem’, your stress will get worse. That feeling of loss of control is one of the main causes of stress and lack of wellbeing.”

Connect with people and family

A good support network of colleagues, friends and family can ease your work troubles and help you see things in a different way. Professor Cooper says:

“If you don’t connect with people, you won’t have support to turn to when you need help,” The activities we do with friends help us relax.

Have some time for yourself

He recommends setting aside a couple of nights a week for some quality “me time” away from work.

Challenge yourself

Setting yourself goals and challenges, whether at work or outside, such as learning a new language or a new sport, helps build confidence. This will help you deal with stress.

Avoid unhealthy behaviours

Don’t rely on alcohol, smoking and caffeine as your ways of coping. In the long term, these crutches won’t solve your problems. They’ll just create new ones. “Men more than women are likely to do this. We call this avoidance behaviour,” says Professor Cooper. “Women are better at seeking support from their social circle.”

Help other people

If you don’t have time to volunteer, try to do someone a favour every day. It can be something as small as helping someone cross the road or going on a coffee run for colleagues.

Work smarter, not harder

Working smarter means prioritising your work, concentrating on the tasks that’ll make a real difference.

Try to be positive

Look for the positives in life, and things for which you’re grateful. Try writing down 3 things that went well, or for which you’re grateful, at the end of every day.

Accept the things you can't change

Changing a difficult situation isn’t always possible. Try to concentrate on the things you do have control over.

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