How to Manage Everyday Stress
With the hustle and bustle of today’s world, daily stress among Americans has reached an all-time high. According to a recent Gallup poll, 60% of Americans claim to experience significant stress on a daily basis—a 14% increase from 2019. Daily stress can be brought on by a range of factors, including financial concerns, work, school, lack of sleep, politics and general daily stressors such as overthinking certain situations. Fortunately, there are various tried-and-true techniques to manage everyday stress. Keep reading to discover how daily stress may affect your body and how you can manage everyday stress.
How Stress Affects the Body
There is a misconception that stress is specifically a mental health issue. Yes, long-term stress may increase the odds of mental health issues such as anxiety or depression. However, daily stress can affect various systems within the human body. Some of the most common effects of stress on the human body include:
- Musculoskeletal system: When the human body senses it’s stressed out, the muscles tend to tense up. The muscle tension is sort of your body’s way of protecting itself against injury and pain. When stress is brought on the body, the muscles tend to tense up at the same time. Long-term stress increases the possibility of injury or chronic pain.
- Respiratory system: Stress can amplify issues and create further problems for individuals with a pre-existing respiratory disease. Stress affects the respiratory system through shortness of breath and rapid breathing. Studies indicate that acute stress (generally brought on by a traumatic event) can trigger asthma attacks or panic attacks for individuals prone to panic attacks.
- Cardiovascular system: The cardiovascular system comprises the heart and blood vessels. They work in tandem to provide nourishment and oxygen to the body. Additionally, the activity of the heart and blood vessels works with the human body’s response to stress. Acute stress may cause your heart rate to increase, and continued acute stress may result in inflammation of the circulatory system.
What Are Some of the Best Stress Management Strategies?
Learning to manage stress can have a huge impact on your daily life and potentially prevent some of the serious issues mentioned above. While there is no one-size-fits-all approach to stress management, the following are some of the most tried-and-true techniques.
1. Identify the Sources of Stress in Your Life
Like other problems in your life, it’s hard to address the issue if you can’t identify the source. Stress management begins with recognizing the root causes of stress in your life. While it may be easy to pinpoint major stressors in your life, such as losing a loved one or your job, the minute issues are the most challenging ones. We recommend analyzing your daily habits to help recognize some of the daily stressors in your life. The following questions may help you draw a conclusion as to why the stress never ends.
- Is stress a part of your daily work or home life?
- Can your stress be attributed to outside factors? (Certain people who you interact with daily may have an effect on your stress levels.)
- Do you play stress off as a temporary issue? (People who fall victim to this may say something like, “I don’t have time for that. I have a ton going on right now.”)
Your stress levels may be out of your control until you identify and address the root cause. One good way to do this is to start a stress journal. Anytime you feel stressed, write down about it. By keeping a journal, you may start to recognize patterns of stress, and you’ll be better equipped to deal with it the next time you are faced with the same situation.
2. Focus On a Healthier Lifestyle
Unhealthy lifestyles tend to bring on more stress. And according to a survey conducted by the American Psychological Association (APA), individuals tend to engage in more unhealthy behaviors to manage stress. This could end up being a vicious cycle that never ends. Adjusting your daily habits may help bring down your stress levels.
Here are some tips to help foster a healthier lifestyle:
- Exercise regularly: One of the most popular ways to relieve stress is to get moving. You don’t have to go to the gym and train like a bodybuilder. Studies suggest at least 20 minutes of physical activities per day can benefit the mind and body.
- Watch what you eat: A survey conducted by the APA found that stress levels among frequent fast-food eaters are higher than those who indulge in moderation.
- Ensure you are getting enough sleep per night: Studies have found that there is a close link between your mood and the amount of sleep you’ve received. An inadequate amount of sleep can cause you to be irritable and stressed out.
A healthy lifestyle isn’t built overnight. You’ll have to create a wellness routine that you believe you can stick to for the long haul.
3. Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
The theory behind CBT is that psychological problems result from how we as humans interpret and evaluate situations, feelings, behaviors and thoughts. CBT has been found to be effective for individuals who may have PTSD, depression, anger, anxiety and overall stress. While there are licensed therapists you can visit, there are some coping strategies you can do in the comfort of your own home.
- Diaphragmatic breathing: This technique is one of the most basic yet effective CBT exercises. To do this exercise, you’ll need to fully engage your stomach, abdominal muscles and diaphragm when breathing. Clear your mind and breathe in and out a few times.
- Behavioral activation: Generally, when people are stressed out, they feel like doing nothing. Behavioral activation helps individuals get more active and enjoy pleasurable moments in their lives.
- Self-monitoring: This is another simple CBT technique, but it’s the foundation for many CBT coping strategies. As mentioned before, to address a problem, you’ll need to identify it first. You’ll need to do some self-reflecting, but it should be worth it in the end.
Consider CBD for Stress Relief
Over the last few decades, CBD has been studied intently to see if there are practical uses. While there is still so much research that needs to be completed, we can draw conclusions based on the vast amount of published studies and research.
Before diving into what the research says, we must first outline the difference between daily stress and long-term (chronic stress). Daily stress is generally short-term that is caused by something that can be quickly resolved. Chronic stress is more long-term and may lead to serious illness.
With that said, the published research mainly looked at chronic stress and related issues such as anxiety. While anxiety and everyday stress are two separate issues, the human body tries to handle them similarly. CBD may help support daily wellness and offer a sense of calmness when stress starts to kick in.
Sky Wellness CBD Products
Managing everyday stressors may seem difficult at the moment. Implementing some of the strategies discussed in this article may help you overcome those stressful moments.
If you are considering taking CBD to help daily wellness routine, consider Sky Wellness. We have a wide range of products available such as tinctures, softgels, vapes and topicals. For individuals who deal with stress often, our CBD Daily Softgels are a particularly popular choice. If you are unsure of which product is best for you, try our CBD Product Quiz. This quick quiz will provide products tailored to your specific needs.
The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer. All opinions expressed in this blog post are the author's own and do not reflect the view of Sky Wellness or its brands/affiliates.