Don’t Feed the Beast: Seven Tips for Taming the Stress Monster

December 28, 2023

People seemingly are taxed with more choices than ever, which can test our coping skills.

Think about the options at your local coffee shop; there’s a lot more to ordering than just deciding if you want to add cream. Now consider the many apps and opportunities to communicate with the world that your smartphone offers, and it’s no wonder most people are stressed.

In fact, 10% of prescriptions filled across 43 states in 2022 were for anti-anxiety drugs, according to a report by Good RX.

The hard truth is that your overall wellness depends on being able to manage the stress that comes from living in an age with so much at your fingertips.

Try these seven tips to tame the tension and get rid of some of the main triggers of stress and anxiety.

1. Unfriend social media

If you have a smartphone, social media basically has you on a short leash. It actually sparks addictive responses in your brain.

How much more time would you have in your day if you weren’t on social media? Eliminating this massive time sucker can greatly ease the stress that comes from never feeling like you have enough time.

Not ready to totally unplug from Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat just yet? Try it for a week – or even a few days – and see how you can fill those extra hours.

2. Talk and then talk some more

This idea may seem great if you’re an extrovert. On the other hand, all the introverts are retreating as fast as they can.

Like it or not, conversation is one of the most productive forms of problem-solving. You may be amazed by how much getting an objective opinion can change your perspective and lighten your mental burden.

3. Get moving

Scientific fact: Physical activity makes you feel good. That’s because it releases dopamine, norepinephrine and serotonin – the feel-good endorphins. These endorphins cause your situation to seem less dire and help you have a better overall outlook. Even 5-10 minutes of walking, biking, etc. can be enough to give you a positive boost.

4. Read

Reading is a great way to divert your mind from a train of thought that’s causing you anxiety.

So go ahead, lose yourself in a fictional story or a good biography. It will leave you better able to think creatively and come up with fresh solutions.

5. Take a snooze

Napping for 30-90 minutes can improve your decision-making skills and encourage creative thinking.

Are you wondering if the guilt of napping will just add more stress to your day? The only way to know for sure is to give it a try and see how you feel.

6. Free-write

Grab a piece of paper or a notebook and write for five to 10 minutes. What you write isn’t the important part. It can be anything that comes to mind. Don’t censor yourself and don’t worry about grammar and spelling.

You’ll probably be surprised by how much sharper you feel when you’re done.

7. Crank up the tunes

Listening to music can drastically reduce stress because it helps your brain enter a more innovative state where ideas are free to flow. You may also experience that same rush of endorphins that helps you feel good after you’re physically active.

Manage stress instead of letting it manage you

Unfortunately, you’ll never be totally free of stress and some level of worry. That’s life.

But you can put these seven ideas into action and make a significant improvement.

Having adequate health care also plays a role in your mental and physical well-being.

Give us a call at UROne Benefits™ at 800-722-7331. Our experts will make sure you have the coverage you need, so you have one less thing to worry about.


This post was originally published in April 2017; updated December 2023.