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I’ll let you into a secret – I’m not über chipper about blogging 100% of the time. That slightly over-eager puppyishness I have about blogging can lead to me doing way too much, which in turn leads to stress, overwhelm…and blogger burnout! READ MORE >>> https://t.co/8zDITDNrlO pic.twitter.com/bM6FY2fUVL— Productive Blogging (@EbGargano) March 7, 2019
You probably already know that stress can reduce your performance and focus in all areas of your life.
And stress can pile up quickly in our increasingly busy lives. Getting a balance can be really hard. However, there are some quick stress relief tips that are proven to work and you can use right now.
This post will show you 9 quick stress relief tips that you can try today.
Why is Your Mindset so Important?
The Happiness Advantage is an incredible book that has proven the importance of happiness on performance. There are around 200 studies in this book that researched over 250,000 people and found one common theme…
Happiness improves performance in nearly every area of our life including:
- Community involvement
So let me ask you this, do you think it is important to spend time reducing stress in our lives?
Let me tell you the story of 3 different groups of doctors in a study presented by The World Counts.
One group of doctors were primed to feel happy, one group were given neutral but relevant medicine related statements to read, and one group was given nothing.
They were all given a series of symptoms to analyze.
Can you take any guesses as to how the study played out?
Well, of course, the doctors that were primed to feel happy made decisions and used more creativity to find the correct diagnosis quicker. But would you expect it to be almost 2 times as quick as the other groups?
But that’s not the most interesting part! The most fascinating part of the story is how the doctors were primed to feel happy…
They were given a piece of candy before the test…
And they weren’t even allowed to eat it before the study in case the sugar affected the results!
Now let me ask you this, if you are an online marketer or need any creativity with your job then do you think having a positive mind may help you? It’s certainly going to be necessary to reach financial independence and retire early.
So here are the quick stress relief tips you can try today to improve your performance!
You’ve probably heard that this one before.
Meditation is one of the most important high-performance habits out there. You may have seen all these celebrities talking about it and posts on social media about the magic of meditation.
But when are we mere mortals supposed to fit this into our hectic lives?
Now let me ask you this…
Do you think successful people have more time to meditate, or do you think they are successful because they meditate?
It’s the whole chicken and egg thing!
If you’re like me you probably think that meditating is for hippies sitting in a field with flowers on their hair. But let me tell you something. If you can really start letting your brain switch off more often, it will be much more powerful when you switch it on.
Yes, it will feel weird the first few times you try it.
Yes, it is easy to forget to do.
And yes, you will want to push it to the back burner when life gets busy.
You will never find the time to do anything. If you want time, you must make it.
Meditating has been scientifically proven to improve performance and reduce stress.
This fact is verified by Idea Pod. Neuroscientists researched monks that had meditated for more than 20 years. Their left prefrontal cortex (the part of their brain responsible for happiness) had actually increased in size. And it doesn’t have to be a really long time every day… even just a few minutes can have has this effect.
You’re probably wondering how to even start meditating or what you should think of. Luckily there are some great guided meditation apps available to learn about how to meditate more effectively.
Headspace (Ten 10-minute guided meditation’s for free… A great way to learn what you should be doing!)
Calm (free for teachers and some basic features for free)
Note- these are not affiliate links, they are just great apps that I have personally used!
#2 Use the Pomodoro Technique
You may have heard this before too, but my guess would not be to do with stress reduction!
Stress often sneaks up on us when we are overwhelmed. And the Pomodoro technique is a great way to feel less overwhelmed. Top internet marketers such as John Lee Dumas speak about this religiously as a time-management tip.
To simply explain what the Pomodoro technique is:
Set a 25-minute timer and focus on one task… then take a 5-minute break. Repeat.com
(Apologies!!! I hate it when people add “.com” to things, I have just watched a cat video so I’m in a particularly good mood)
FUN FACT: The word Pomodoro actually comes from the Italian word for tomato. This was because Francesco Cirillo developed this time-management method using a tomato-shaped timer.
When you use this technique you help to get your mind into a deep state of concentration and only focus on one thing at a time. This helps to:
- Manage distractions and control your time
- Increase accountability
- Improve weekly and quarterly planning
- Decrease back pain and mental fatigue
- Maintain motivation
Noisili is an awesome (free) Chrome extension you can use to set a timer and send a bit of white noise into your earbuds.
The best thing is that when the time is up, the white noise stops, which is much less offputting than an alarm going off. This helps to finish your sentence or thoughts instead of being rudely interrupted!
Top tip- I’ve tried a lot of combos for the noises in noisli and I’m currently loving the fan & leaves combo. Play with it and see what works for you!
If you are looking for more ways to make more time then check out “Save Hours of Time with these Resources“. There are some apps in here you absolutely need to use your time more efficiently. Combine this with the course on using Pinterest to automate traffic and you’ll be well on your way to making way more time to sit on the beach sipping cocktails!
I can almost hear your mind saying “Oh man really, you’re saying this too?”
Apart from the fact I’ve been a PE teacher for most of my adult life… it’s again scientifically proven! And it’s probably the most important of the quick stress relief tips.
Imagine what it would be like if exercise didn’t have to be super long. Or if it didn’t have to be super strenuous. In fact, it’s actually recommended it’s not either of these things to reduce stress (unless you really enjoy what it is you’re doing).
The habit is far more important than what it is you do. You really just want to achieve 2 things by exercising to relieve stress:
- Release serotonin (the happy hormone)
- Get the blood flowing through your body
A brisk 10-minute walk every day would be way better than forcing yourself to go to the gym and “smash out a 2-hour body blitz”. Especially if you were so achy and put off that you don’t do anything for the next week.
Look for ways to create a habit out of it. Here are some ideas:
- Walk the dog every morning
- Take the stairs at work
- Walk to the shops instead of driving
- Do 10 minutes of yoga in the morning
- Cycle/ jog/ walk to work
- Spend one minute doing one of the exercises below…
Who else likes free money?
So if you’d like to get paid for the exercise you already do, then get Achievement. You get paid just for walking, plus loads of other great ways such as taking surveys and logging other exercises that you do.
You’re missing out on free money if you don’t connect your phone with this app!
#4 Conscious Random Acts of Kindness
The important word here is conscious.
Be on the lookout for ways that you can do random acts of kindness for other people. This is one of the best quick stress relief tips out there.
Big Think conducted some studies that proved that when you give money to someone else (or charity) you get a hit of positivity that lasts much longer than when you spend money on yourself.
But as you keep skimming through this article, you’re beginning to realise it doesn’t have to be big gestures or money related tasks to reduce stress.
Here are some free and easy random acts of kindness you can try to reduce stress (remember they need to be conscious!):
- Holding the door open for someone
- Giving someone else your last sweetie (candy for our American friends)
- Making your family a nice dinner
- Calling a relative you haven’t spoken to for a while
- Massaging a loved one
- Asking a colleague or friend about an issue they have (and LISTENING… you don’t need to fix it!)
- Playing a game with your children or family
- Let someone else decide what to watch on TV
- Send a thank you email (or a handwritten note) to a colleague, family member or friend
Are you beginning to see it’s not the act that is important but the conscious attempt to help others?
#5 Writing a Grateful List
This has a double bonus!
Not only do you feel grateful for something during the day but you can get a hit of positivity when you remember this. Writing 3 things that you are grateful for is an awesome way to notice the little things.
When you are in the habit of being grateful for the things in your life, you will start to notice more of the things in your life that you should be grateful for.
If you’re looking for some quick stress relief tips, then this may just be the one you can do right now.
Top tip- Try to put down one thing you have learnt or read that day. This way these seemingly small pieces of information can produce a whole load of knowledge that you can use. Check out “What I’ve Learnt from Reading Over 100 Books in the Last 3 Years” to see how useful this information can be.
#6 Watching an Inspirational or Funny Video
This is, without doubt, the easiest of the quick stress relief tips you will find on this page.
Have you ever wondered why those cat videos are loved by so many people? I dare you to watch this and try not to smile!
These types of videos give us a hit of positivity. They make us feel good and as we now know, we are more productive and creative when we feel good.
TED talks are a great place to find some serious motivation.
If you ever have one of those “I can’t be bothered to get out of my PJ’s days” then TED talks are the place to find some inspiration you didn’t even know existed within you!
Here’s Shawn Achor (the author of the Happiness Advantage) to give you quick boost!
Top tip- Bookmark a few funny short videos that you know will make you laugh or feel happy. Watch this before you set off to write or do something creative online.
#7 Have Something to Look Forward to
No this doesn’t have to be the holiday of a lifetime, a wedding or the arrival of a baby!
It can be any simple, cheap or free activity that you enjoy. For example:
- Date night with your partner
- Games evening with some friends
- Playing a sport that you enjoy
- A movie that you want to see in the cinema
- Invite some friends over for a party
- A staycation
- Spa day
- Arrange to meet some friends for a big sports event/ concert
- A street party with your neighbours
By planning for these fun things you have coming up you will actually get a hit of positivity when you plan it… and when you do it! That’s two for the price of one amigo!
And are you beginning to notice that positivity is the antidote for stress?
#8 Stop Using Screens Before Bed
You probably have heard that getting a good nights sleep one of the most important stress relief tips.
However, that is much easier said than done.
Sleep Foundation explains the science behind why not looking at screens before bed is the best way to improve your sleep.
Now, I can almost hear your mind thinking “but screens don’t really affect me, and I need it for my work!”
Let me guess “caffeine also doesn’t affect you right?”
Well, here’s the thing. We are becoming immune to these stimulants. The more we rely on them the more we feel like we need them to feel “normal”. But it’s not normal…
Here are the facts:
- Screens omit an artificial “blue light”
- This suppresses the sleep-inducing hormone (melatonin)
- This makes it harder to fall asleep
- We get less REM (deep sleep, the main cycle of sleep that we need to have)
- Therefore we are less alert and awake in the morning (leaving us feeling tired and sluggish)
Top Tip- Try reading for half an hour in bed & leave your phone in another room. Steadily increase the time where you don’t look at a screen before bed… remember the habit is more important! You can increase the time before bed without screens after the habit forms!
#9 Give Someone a Hug!
Healthline has found that our body releases Oxytocin (the hug hormone) when we hug, touch or sit close to other people.
This is another one of the stress relief tips that is scientifically proven to work!
There’s not too much more to be said about this one, find someone to hug and do it! Not only will it help you, but it can be another random act of kindness that can brighten up someone else’s day too.
Quick Stress Relief Tips Summary
So there you have it!
9 quick stress relief tips that you can use today. With each breath you take you feel more and more relaxed and in a positive frame of mind.
And I can’t leave you without sharing my all-time favourite TED talk (if you don’t have time right now remember to pin this page for later)…
So what is your favourite quick stress relief tip? Have you got any others that aren’t on this list?
Keep changing for the better,
P.S. If you have enjoyed this article you should definitely check out Shawn Achor’s book “The Happiness Advantage“. His writing style is awesome and you are guaranteed to learn some amazing ways to be more positive every day.
P.P.S. If you are interested in making money online to free up your time, have a look at my #1 recommended program here. Plus get your free email course on how to turn your blog into a profitable website.