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Stress Management - Ways to Relieve Stress

The best way to manage your stress is to learn healthy coping strategies. You can start practicing these tips right away. Try one or two until you find a few that work for you. Practice these techniques until they become habits you turn to when you feel stress. You can also use this coping strategies form(What is a PDF document?) to see how you respond to stress.

Stress-relief techniques focus on relaxing your mind and your body.

Ways to relax your mind

  • Write. It may help to write about things that are bothering you. Write for 10 to 15 minutes a day about stressful events and how they made you feel. Or think about tracking your stress. This helps you find out what is causing your stress and how much stress you feel. After you know, you can find better ways to cope.
  • Let your feelings out. Talk, laugh, cry, and express anger when you need to. Talking with friends, family, a counselor, or a member of the clergy about your feelings is a healthy way to relieve stress.
  • Do something you enjoy. You may feel that you're too busy to do these things. But making time to do something you enjoy can help you relax. It might also help you get more done in other areas of your life. Try:
    • A hobby, such as gardening.
    • A creative activity, such as writing, crafts, or art.
    • Playing with and caring for pets.
    • Volunteer work.
  • Focus on the present. Meditation and guided imagery are two ways to focus and relax your mind.

Ways to relax your body

  • Exercise. Regular exercise is one of the best ways to manage stress. Walking is a great way to get started. Even everyday activities such as housecleaning or yard work can reduce stress. Stretching can also relieve muscle tension. For more information about becoming more active, see the topic Fitness.
  • Try techniques to relax. Breathing exercises, muscle relaxation, and yoga can help relieve stress.

You might like to try a combination of these techniques.

actionset.gif Stress Management: Relaxing Your Mind and Body

In addition to practicing these skills, you might also try some other techniques to reduce stress, such as massage or music therapy.

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WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: May 03, 2013
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.

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