1. Go for a walk
Virtually any form of exercise can act as a stress reliever but activities such as walking or jogging that involve repetitive movements of large muscle groups can particularly be stress relieving since they offer many of the same benefits as meditation. The benefits are strongest when you exercise regularly. People who exercise regularly are less likely to experience anxiety than those who don’t exercise.
There are a few reasons behind this.
- Regular exercise lowers the level of stress hormones. It also helps release endorphins, which are chemicals that improve your mood and act as natural painkillers.
- Exercise can also improve your sleep quality, which can be negatively affected by stress and anxiety.
- Regular exercise improves feelings of confidence and mood, which in turn promotes mental well-being.
Try to find an exercise regularly or activity you enjoy, such as walking, dancing, rock climbing, or yoga to relieve stress, worry, and anxiety.
2. Connect with nature
Spending time outside in nature is good for the body and the mind. It helps relieve feelings of worry, anxiety, and stress. Natural beauty distracts us from problems and just helps us feel good. Studies show that being in nature, or even viewing scenes of nature, reduces anger, fear, and stress and increases pleasant feelings. Exposure to nature not only makes you feel better emotionally, but it also contributes to your physical well-being, reducing blood pressure, heart rate, muscle tension, and the production of stress hormones.
3. Serve others
Depression, worry, stress, and anxiety tend to make a person retreat inward. Helping other people can help bring us outside ourselves. It can also help distract us from our own problems and think about something else. Studies have shown that people who help others have lowered levels of depression and anxiety. In fact, in the research study, service was more effective in making a positive difference in the way participants felt about themselves than making an effort to pamper themselves, or creating self-esteem goals.
4. Pet the dog
If you’re feeling anxious, stressed, depressed or lonely, one thing that might help is to spend some time petting a dog or cat.
Science shows that playing with or petting an animal can reduce stress and can also help us reduce feelings of isolation and help us feel more connected. Petting a dog or cat increases the production in the brain of “feel good” neurotransmitters which lower stress and increases feelings of happiness. It also decreases the production of stress hormones, so it works in multiple ways to help you calm down and feel better.