It is easy to get overwhelmed and anxious when balancing all that we have going on in our lives. For example, maintaining relationships with friends and family, school or work, paying bills, taking care of loved ones, taking care of our health and wellbeing, and all of our other priorities. It is so important to put health and wellbeing first because we cannot manage all that we have to do when we are stressed and anxious about other things. Living in the moment and taking things one step at a time not only allows a person to appreciate all of the good moments in his or her day, but he or she can put full attention to each task and event. Here are some steps that I take to ensure that I don’t get too stressed or too anxious with all that I have going on in my life:
- Take time for you: I make sure to plan a short period of time for myself each day. Whether it’s reading a magazine article, watching a TV program, or taking an extra long shower, I use that time to unwind and just enjoy.
- Spend time with loved ones: Taking time to be with or talk to friends and family is so important to me because we can listen to each other and offer advice to one another. I find that sharing my feelings with loved ones makes me feel less anxious and stressed.
- Put away your phone and computer: Every couple of days I designate a couple of hours where I choose to refrain from using my phone and computer. Another way to lessen anxiety and stress from technology is to designate a day or couple of hours where you reply only to urgent emails and messages.
- Plan ahead: Knowing what I have to do and when I have to do it allows me to feel less overwhelmed. I prioritize my tasks in a list and keep important events in a calendar.
- Get outside: Taking a walk outside and even finding a place to eat lunch outside puts me in a good mood.
- Try something new: Learning something new or pushing yourself outside of your comfort zone allows you to set new goals and realize talents that you might not have known you had.
- Make time for the things you love to do: Planning your days so that every once in a while you can have time to do the things you love will allow you to have something to look forward to. It can be as simple as going to the movies, playing your favourite sport, or taking time for a hobby, like knitting. Doing the things you love to do will allow you to balance your time and grow in your strengths.
- Take time to reflect on your day: Writing a journal or simply thinking about the highlights of your day will remind you of how much you accomplished rather than to focus on the negative. Some things that you could reflect on are: what you accomplished, what the highlight of your day was, something that you learned, or how you helped others. Reflecting on these things will help you to set goals for the next day.
In your day-to-day routine try and focus on one thing at a time so that you can give each task and event your full attention. Talk to a professional if stress and anxiety are getting in the way of your daily life. Talk to a loved one to help you find the best support possible.
By Carina Cappuccitti, Student Intern