how to reduce stress and burnout
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Today, Monday, July 24th, is International Self Care Day. It’s about taking care of your mental and physical health so you can be the best and happiest you possible. One way to practice self-care is to reduce your stress levels. The 2022 American Institute of Stress (AIS) study found that Americans are among the most stressed people in the world. If you wanted to know which state is the most stressed, it would be Louisiana. When it comes to work-related stress, 35% of workers cited their boss as a source of stress, 80% of workers cited ineffective corporate communications as a stressor, and 39% cited their workload as a cause.
If you’ve been feeling drained or underperforming at work lately, you may be suffering from burnout, a state of emotional and physical exhaustion brought on by prolonged stress. In the spirit of International Self Care Day, let’s take a step back and talk about how you can reduce your stress in general. While you may be used to moving on, we’re here to help you lift your spirits, face your burnout, and take better care of yourself.
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What are the symptoms of stress?
There are many symptoms of stress, both physical and mental. Mental symptoms include agitation, feeling overwhelmed, difficulty eating, low self-esteem, and avoidance of others. Physical symptoms include lack of energy, headaches, stomach upset (diarrhea, constipation, nausea), insomnia, chest pain, flu, nervousness, dry mouth, and teeth grinding.
What is burnout?
Burnout describes the effects of intense stress over a long period of time, often work-related. It can lead to physical and mental symptoms, including:
- Emotional and physical exhaustion
- alienation from activities
- reduced performance at work
These are just a few of the many symptoms associated with burnout at work. Knowing all the possible symptoms will help you fight your burnout better.
Self-Care Options for International Self-Care Day 2023
Focus on a healthier diet
The saying goes that an apple a day keeps the doctor away. The way we eat has a huge impact on our well-being, and stress is no exception. Studies show that stress can lead to overeating and weight gain. This, in turn, can stress you out even more and cause you to eat even more. One way to break this cycle is to eat healthier, more nutritious meals. However, eating healthier is often easier said than done. After a long and stressful day at work, many of us would rather order something quickly than take the time to prepare a meal.
Luckily, you don’t have to sacrifice convenience for health. CookUnity is our preferred ready meal delivery service. CookUnity’s offers a variety of delicious dishes that you can filter by categories like keto and vegan.
Get a good night’s sleep
After a long day, there’s nothing better than a good night’s sleep to recharge your batteries for the day ahead. Sleep is vital to our well-being — people who consistently get less than eight hours of sleep are more likely to be unmotivated, lethargic, irritable, and stressed. These symptoms are all related to stress, so getting enough sleep may make you feel more relaxed.
We’ve tested countless mattresses at Reviewed and found the Tuft and Needle Original mattress to be the best overall. Whether you’re a side sleeper or tend to sleep on your back, Tuft and Needle’s affordable mattress will help you sleep comfortably thanks to its foam that quickly adjusts to your body shape.
Next up: your pillow. You can’t sleep well without a good pillow and you can’t go wrong with the original pillow from Coop Home Goods. We’ve tested it ourselves and are thrilled that you can fill it with as much or as little shredded memory foam as needed. In addition, it is machine washable.
Everyone knows what pillows and mattresses feel like, but what about weighted blankets? If you haven’t tried them yet, you should, as many swear by their calming properties and sleep aid. The Gravity blanket is pricey, but it more than deserves its price thanks to its luxurious feel and great weight distribution, which made our testers feel cozy and calm.
$745 from Tuft&Needle $72 from Amazon $250 from Gravity
Move your body through movement
Exercise is another form of self-care that can be used to treat the effects of stress, as exercise can distract you from your worries. Exercise is good for your health. That’s why it’s important to take some time to move your body, especially if you do most of your work in a seated position. If you want, you can even work out at your desk.
If you go running, we strongly recommend that you wear the right shoes. With the right running shoe, every step can feel like a smooth glide. For women’s shoes, we recommend Nike’s Air Zoom Pegasus 39, which offers better bounce when running than its predecessor. For men’s shoes, we recommend the New Balance Fresh Foam 1080 V11 Running Shoes, which are padded with breathable materials to allow the shoe to flex and stretch as you run. Before you start exercising, make sure you are taking the right steps to prevent heat exhaustion when exercising outdoors.
$77 at Nike $135 at Amazon
For those who prefer to stay indoors while exercising, consider an exercise bike. The Peloton+ bike is our favorite with a simple assembly process, easy adjustability, and plenty of on-demand classes to get you started on your health journey.
Whatever exercise you want to do, a fitness tracker will help you stay on track towards your goal. The Fitbit Charge 5 is our favorite because it’s comfortable, easy to use, and records a lot of data – you can check calories burned, average speed of a run, and even how well you slept. In addition, it tracks stress levels by measuring electrical changes in your skin. This makes it the perfect tool to see how your burnout is improving.
$2495 from Peloton $120 from Amazon
Change your perspective with yoga and meditation
Mental health issues like stress and anxiety can often be alleviated by changing your perception of the world and your role in it. Mindfulness meditation emphasizes attention and acceptance to achieve a state of positivity and calm associated with reducing stress and burnout. It can be challenging for beginners, but there are apps that can help you get started. Headspace is our favorite meditation app and once you try it, you’ll quickly see why we love it so much. The app gets you into a meditative mindset in no time and offers a wealth of programs to help you become more mindful. We also like that the program lets you customize the length of meditation sessions and offers wellness-focused videos. Headspace can even help you fall asleep.
Try Headspace free for 14 days
Yoga is a form of self-care that combines meditation with low-intensity exercises that focus on breathing and posture to reduce stress. For those looking to try yoga, the Alo Moves app is a good place to start. It’s our favorite yoga app because it offers a wide variety of yoga styles and teachers, and even personalizes workout suggestions for each user. Not to mention that it is easy to use and its rich content more than justifies its price.
Try Alo Moves free for 14 days
To do yoga properly, you need the right equipment — at least a yoga mat. Even if you already have a mat, it may be time to replace it with a new one. Lululemon’s The Mat is everything you could want in a yoga mat. It’s big, offers the perfect softness and is easy to clean. You may need additional accessories such as B. Gaiam yoga blocks. They hold their shape, offer a firm grip and are soft to the touch.
$98 at Lululemon $11 at Amazon
Look for other forms of self-care
There are many ways to relax and relieve stress. One possibility is the art of massage. With a practical foot bubble bath you can treat yourself to a great massage. We’ve tested many foot spas and found the Ivation foot spa massager to be the best overall thanks to features like adjustable heat, massage rollers, water jets, and a timer.
$90 from Amazon
Why settle for just soaking your feet when you can treat your whole body too? A long bath is a proven way to reduce stress. With a bath bomb, you can take your next bathing session to the next level and be sure you’ll feel like you’re in the lap of luxury while you’re at it. They’re fun, fragrant, and quite affordable. We particularly recommend the LifeAround2Angels bath bombs. Not only do they smell and look good, they actually moisturize your skin—all without messing up your bathtub or towel.
$27 from Amazon
Surround yourself with the pleasant scent of essential oils that will help you relax. Of all the diffusers we’ve tested, we love the Saje Aroma Oum. It has a cool design, is easy to use and is made of high-quality materials.
$106 from Saje
When you go to bed, we recommend using the Renpho eye massager, which will relieve your eyestrain and help you fall asleep.
$61 from Amazon
When you’re done with your self-care ritual, slip into a cozy robe and try to focus your mind on positive things. A coloring book for adults is a great way to keep your mind active and take your mind off worrying thoughts. The Cindy Elsharouni Stress Relieving Adult Coloring Book is a great choice, with over 60 cool designs for you to fill in (even if you don’t have the best coloring skills). Another practice people swear by is keeping a gratitude journal. Our tester found that gratitude journals improve her sleep and overall happiness simply by writing down things she’s grateful for. While you can buy a new journal, chances are you already have one at home that’s perfect for the job.
$128 at Amazon $7 at Amazon
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