6 Easy and Healthy Ways to Combat Stress


Exercise causes your body to release endorphins which are chemicals that fight pain, help you go to sleep and make you feel more positive. It also helps you relax your mind from the day’s stress as you focus on the exercise. Don’t start out with 20 minute run, if you don’t exercise a lot already. Start with a daily walk and work your way up to daily jogs. And if that’s not your thing, find a type of exercise you enjoy like yoga, biking, sports, hiking or any activity that gets you moving.

Talk About Stress

Venting to someone you know or bouncing ideas for a solution are great ways to help take the weight off. Sometimes just talking at someone who isn’t judgemental about different concerns, complaints or whatever is bothering you really helps let the load off and stop bottling everything up. In other cases, you might want an actual answer to your problem. By talking to someone about what’s stressing you out, they could present solutions you didn’t think of since they likely have a different perspective or have been through something similar.


Don’t Misuse or Abuse Prescription Drugs 

Don’t let your stress lead to the misuse or abuse of prescription drugs. Taking meds not prescribed to you, not following a doctor’s instructions, or taking a medication for a reason other than why is what prescribed is misuse. Misusing prescription drugs is not safer than using other types of drugs and can lead to even more problems. By choosing not to misuse prescription drugs you’re not alone, 9 out of 10 teens in Cortland County have never misused prescription drugs.

Deep Breathing Exercises 

Deep breathing exercises tell the brain to calm down and relax. Yoga can also help to release tension. Deep breathing helps your body get more oxygen and can even help lower blood pressure. An easy breathing exercise you can try right now is Belly Breathing:

First to to sit or lay down in a comfortable position. Then, with a hand on your stomach, just under your ribs and the other on your chest, breathe in through your nose. Your belly should expand (hence the name) and your chest should remain still. Finally, slowly let the air out through your mouth, with your lips puckered as if you’re about to whistle, with your hand on your stomach, helping to gently push out all the air. Repeat 3 to 10 times, daily if possible.

Time Management

Planning ahead will help unwanted surprises like last minute projects jumping up and giving you a hard time. It also helps to sort through tasks. Categorize things as urgent, important and not important. Urgent would be something that needs to be done right away.. like an 3 page essay that’s due the next day, important means it is important to do to avoid problems.. like homework, or it can be activities that are important to you. Not important are things that don’t need to be done or aren’t important to you. Use this to direct your energy towards activities that demand your attention and prioritize what to get done before thing become out of hand.

Get Mindful

Mindfulness, or focusing on the present moment and how you feel right now, helps to reset and rest the mind. By focusing on what’s happening to you in the present moment, you’re better able to focus on the work at hand and let go of the stress of future projects. It can help with getting into the workflow, becoming aware of negative thoughts so you can alter them to be more positive, and helps you to think through a situation before reacting.


Author: Claudia Kolts

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