8 ways to manage stress

8 Ways to Manage Stress


In this day and age, there are increasing factors contributing to stress in individuals, be it from the cost of living crisis, the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic, or just life in general. This stress can accumulate and be detrimental to a person’s mental health and well-being. So, below are seven, science-backed ways to manage stress.


     1. Immerse Yourself in Nature


The British Heart Foundation states, “Lots of people find a sense of relaxation and joy by being in nature. Research suggests that even just the view of the forest from a hospital room helps patients who are feeling down, and that twenty minutes in nature could significantly reduce your levels of cortisol (the stress hormone). The mental health charity Mind suggest that being in nature could also improve your mood, reduce feelings of anger, and improve your confidence and self-esteem.” With that being said, go outside and enjoy a refreshing walk! (After reading the next 5 points)


     2. Chat to a Friend Over a (Decaf) Coffee


Sometimes just chatting with a friend can help to offload any stressful thoughts you have; they can be a safe space to hold them for you. They can listen to how you feel, hold you while you cry or even just cheer you up and make you laugh. A friend can also provide an alternative perspective to your problems and maybe even a solution. (Side note: caffeine increases cortisol, so consume with care!)


     3. Move Your Body


Harvard Health states, “The mental benefits of aerobic exercise have a neurochemical basis. Exercise reduces levels of the body’s stress hormones, such as adrenaline and cortisol. It also stimulates the production of endorphins, chemicals in the brain that are the body’s natural painkillers and mood elevators. Endorphins are responsible for the “runner’s high” and for the feelings of relaxation and optimism that accompany many hard workouts — or, at least, the hot shower after your exercise is over.”


     4. Get Crafting


By keeping your hands busy with a creative project, you can distract your mind from negative thoughts, in a healthy manner. Crafting also reduces cortisol levels and increases confidence and a sense of accomplishment.


     5. Play with a Furry Friend


Interacting with animals has been shown to decrease cortisol levels and lower blood pressure. Some studies even show that interacting with pets can actually increase levels of the feel-good hormone, oxytocin.


     6. Talk to a Professional


The NHS states, “sometimes it’s easier to talk to a stranger than to relatives or friends. During talking therapy, a trained counsellor or therapist listens to you and helps you find your own answers to problems, without judging you. The therapist will give you time to talk, cry, shout or just think. It’s an opportunity to look at your problems in a different way with someone who’ll respect you and your opinions.”


Although these methods may not solve all your problems, hopefully, they will help manage the stress, ultimately tackling your problems more thoughtfully and effectively.

     7.  Use the Feeling Good App!


We are available at your fingertips, 24 hours a day.

Our goal at Feeling Good is to increase wellbeing and resilience to stress, we offer positive mental training audios based on scientific research which can help you feel better and recover from stress.


 8. Practise Mindfulness


What exactly does being mindful actually mean? Well, many sources suggest that we are sometimes too focused on events from the past or worrying about events yet to happen, so we need to learn to take a step back and be present. Pay attention to the present by noticing when your mind wanders off. Come back to your breath. This is a place where you can rest and settle your minds.

How does practising mindfulness help to ease stress? Being mindful can allow us to take a step back from our thoughts and deal with them more productively. This can reduce stress and anxiety, improve attention and memory, and promote self-regulation and empathy.