Written by: Chloe Smith

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We are always seeking new ways to calm ourselves down when we are feeling a bit uneasy.

Problems at work, spousal issues, the repairman who was supposed to be here an hour ago. Our lives are not just full of stress, but this stress exhibits itself on a daily basis.

It seems that there is no escape from it, like we are caught in a vicious circle of being stressed out all the time. This doesn’t necessarily have to be the case, as there are routines we can adopt to decrease stress levels. They are effective because they are performed every day. This puts you in control of the intensity of these “destressers.”

In other words, depending on the level of stress we are exposed to, we can apply these alleviating measures. They vary from person to person, but we present you with the 5 most common daily rituals that will make stress a thing of the past.

MUSIC

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Several studies have shown that music has the real, not to say clinical, power to lower stress levels. This is something that you probably already knew, but the big dilemma is which kind of music is most effective.

Many would answer classical music and they would be wrong. Like we said, each individual is different from the other and has a unique taste for music. That is why the best stress-relieving genre is the one that you fancy the most and like to put on during your free time. Jazz, rock or pop; there is little difference as long as you enjoy it.

You can use headphones if in a public place or turn on the woofers if you are home alone. Since this is your free time when you relax and unwind, your brain will immediately do away with any accumulated stress at the very first note it hears.

AFTERNOON TEA

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The ritual of drinking tea or coffee is associated with relaxation in many cultures. Coffee is a drink that you might want to avoid as all that caffeine makes it hard not to get into a stressful situation.

A much better solution is tea, especially black tea. You probably already drink tea, but on a daily basis. If you change this routine and start drinking just one cup a day, your stress levels will go down significantly after the first month. The herbs teas are made from, have a calming effect on the nervous system.

Another advantage is that you will be able to socialize at work. Your savory cup of tea will be a hit among other coffee-drinking colleagues.

We understand what it’s like to go to the gym a few times a week & look after our physical bodies, but we also need to start looking after our minds — they are now under much more strain, in this world that is quicker than ever.

PHYSICAL ACTIVITY

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If you thought exercise is only good for your muscles, think again. The mental benefits of working out are enormous, one of them being a decrease in stress levels.

Like with tea, start exercising every day, regardless of how low intensity your workout is.

It can range from squeezing an anti-stress ball at work or cycling through town or even yoga. If you opt for the latter, make sure you have the right gear.

A mountain bike would be unsuitable for everyday commuting, so you might want to get an electric bike which is more suitable for urban driving conditions.

Also, avoid driving your car unless it’s a must. Walking or cycling to the local supermarket is considered a physical activity that you do daily.

TAKE a PAUSE FROM ELECTRONICS

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If you have trouble falling asleep, your smartphone might be to blame.

Using your phone before bed is a bad idea because it makes your brain work hard when it should really be in sleep mode.

This causes insomnia that later translates into stress when you get up. In general, looking at any screen has a negative effect on our mood. TV screens, tablets, phones etc; they all give out artificial light that makes our head hurt after a while.

Programmers know this best because they sit for hours in front of several computer monitors.

Try to limit the daily exposure to these devices and try to have electronics-free weekends.

The most important thing about these five pieces of advice is their repetitiveness. Live according to them every day, and soon you will feel significantly less stressed out.

xo Chloe

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