Stress Management

Given the current situation with COVID – 19, many of the stressors which were present at our workplaces, are no longer with us anymore. However, new challenges are undoubtedly arising with the demands of working from home or staying as socially isolated as possible. Having stress management techniques and daily remedies in place will ensure that we don’t get overly attached to these new home/lockdown induced stressors. After all, staying safe and at home is the best way to flatten the curve. Keeping the mind at ease during this time will pay dividends to your mental health too.

Research has shown that new habits are more likely to form when they are practiced at the same time, each day. For example, someone wanting to learn to meditate is more likely to do so if they engage in it immediately after they brush their teeth each evening. The dot points below outline key stress management techniques which can be implemented during COVID – 19 self-isolation, along with the method involved to practice them:

  • Meditation and mindfulness: guided meditation apps such as Headspace and Calm help to establish a mind-body connection and increase self-awareness.
  • Exercise: aim to participate in 30 minutes of moderate physical activity per day. You’ll be more likely to achieve this by engaging in outdoor activities that you enjoy.
  • Healthy eating: Avoid excess caffeine, processed foods that are difficult to digest ( e.g. red meats and dairy products), and try to consume 1 -2 cups of different vegetables with your meals – you should be consuming at least 3 meals per day if on a regular diet.
  • Writing gratitude logs and brain dumps: every evening, write down something that you’re thankful for, something that made you laugh, and something that made you smile over the course of your day. After this, write down any thoughts (positive or negative) as a dump to unclutter the brain. Read over these notes once complete and rationalise whether they are posing a threat or not.
  • Quality sleep: from personal experience, the above point helps tremendously with achieving a calm state of mind before bed. Refrain from electronic devices 30-60 minutes before sleep, and ensure your bedroom is dark and cool – turn off any standby lighting and WIFI.

If you’re keen on understanding more about the topic of stress management, get in touch with us at Absolute Balance from our experienced team of Exercise Consultants. Keep an eye out on our blog page for the upcoming benefits associated with stress management techniques, to keep your work experience at home as enjoyable as possible.

Jeremy Boyle

Exercise Scientist

 

References

Anderson ND, Lau MA, Segal ZV, Bishop SR (2007). “Mindfulness-based stress reduction and attentional control”. Clinical Psychology & Psychotherapy. 14 (6): 449–463. doi:10.1002/cpp.544.

Coursey, R.D., Frankel, B.L., Gaarder, K.R. et al. A comparison of relaxation techniques with electrosleep therapy for chronic, sleep-onset insomnia. Biofeedback and Self-Regulation 5, 57–73 (1980). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00999064