Whether it be work stress, relationship stress, or health stress, we all experience stress at some point in life and at different degrees of intensity. Key to stress management is learning to target these stressors with strategies and skills. Here are four stress management skills that can help reduce stress and create relaxation.
1. Engagement in pleasurable activities: We as human beings can become busy with life and forget to find time to relax by engaging in activities we enjoy. A psychologist can assist in terms of problem solving around ways to start engaging in pleasurable activities with your schedule and/or brainstorming around experimenting with trying out new activities. Experimenting with new activities is important especially as a person ages or there is a loss in the person’s physical abilities and may no longer be able to engage in activities previously enjoyed. A therapist can also focus the person on creating a new norm for themselves to not only find other activities to engage in that help decrease stress but also changing the way in which they perceives their life.
2. Changing thinking: Our thoughts influence feelings and actions. Thoughts can be realistic and accurate and some when stress is high can be unbalanced and illogical. For example, Worries about the future (e.g. I wont ever find a job) can contribute to a lot of anxiety and stress and interfere with ones actions to find a job. A skilled therapist can assist you in identifying these unhelpful thoughts and create more balanced, realistic, and productive thinking that results in a more positive mood.
3. Relaxation skills:
4. Mindfulness – Mindfulness is about being aware in the present moment of your experience. A lot of times we ask humans may be focused on our pasts or worried about the future and this thinking interferes with being in the now moment. Mindfulness teaches how to take in through your senses what is occurring in the present and a therapist can assist in learning this skill.
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