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The Effective Stress Management Guide

by | Mental Health

Sep 9, 2020

Effective stress management will help you to be more satisfied, healthier, and more productive. Life in today’s modern world can be very hectic because we have responsibilities to fulfill, whether at home or at our place of work. Grappling with so many responsibilities at once, our bodies tend to start warning us of the impact of being under pressure beyond its capacity. Such signals translate to one thing—stress. Feelings of stress arise from the body’s instinct to defend itself. 

This instinct is useful in emergencies, such as getting out of the way of an approaching car at high speed. However, stress can lead to unhealthy physical conditions if not managed properly. Stress occurs when your body is working overtime to meet up with your day-to-day challenges. And often, you are just not prepared to deal with anything extra. 

You may begin to feel anxious, scared, worried, and tense. In other words, you begin to experience stress. Now, if stress is not kept under control, it can lead to serious health problems, such as high blood pressure, heart disease, and diabetes.

You may also be dealing with major life events that can cause stress. These may include:

  • Loss of a job (or handling a new one)
  • Preparation for the departure or return of your child or partner
  • The death of a spouse
  • Divorce or marriage
  • Illness or injury to you or your loved one
  • Financial challenges 
  • Lack of children or the birth of new ones

Whether you like it or not, stress is part of normal human life. And be it positive or negative, it can knock you off your balance. Nobody escapes stress, not even superstars like Beyoncé, so don’t feel unfortunate about it. Several forms of stress exist, and we do not all react to them the same way.

So, if stress is a real problem in your daily life, and you don’t want to pay an astronomical sum for therapy upfront, then you have come to the right place. At least, for a first approach!

Since stress is unfortunately inevitable, there are ways (which we will disclose) that can minimize the frequency of its occurrence. It would be best if you learned how to manage stress, and above all, learn to transform it into positive energy by applying stress management techniques.

You might now be wondering how you can reduce stress or possibly avoid it altogether? It’s going to take a lot of your commitment but don’t panic! We will not only disclose and explain some key things you can do to avoid stress but also share proven stress management techniques with you! And believe us, it’s worth it, so pay all the attention you can afford.

Tips To Help You Keep Stress At Bay

1. Get organized

It may sound simple, but getting organized is important in managing stress. We are very often overwhelmed by our workload and daily worries, between cleaning, work, shopping, washing machine, budget management, and even for some, raising children. None of this is easy. But we reassure you, no one can manage all of this without stressing or without some form of organization. It is not possible.

So, take the time to establish a program, especially to spare yourself small moments break. It’s up to you to find how you want to organize yourself—using a calendar? Or a to-do list? From Post-it? It would be best if you personalized how you organize yourself to find your way around and, therefore, to reduce your stress. The best way is to go step-by-step.

2. Concentrate

Concentration is the logical continuation of the first tip! How to stress less? Get organized and concentrate. So yes, one does not go without the other. To manage stress well, you need to organize your day’s activities logically and in a focused way. Concentration is acquired and then maintained. Indeed, one cannot stay focused forever.

In fact, getting distracted is human, and you have no reason to worry about it. But staying focused longer on one task/activity at a time will help you be more efficient in your activity, and therefore be more satisfied, waste less time and therefore: be less stressed. You might not be consistent about it at first, but practice makes perfect.

3. Regular exercise

Stress Management Guide

Exercise and physical activity are healthy and effective ways to undo tension and gain strength. Exercise triggers the brain to release feel-good hormones called endorphins. It will also help you get physically fit, making you feel uplifted. The best way to exercise is to engage in sports. Sports impart uncountable benefits to your body. Indeed, it would be best if you did not think only of the effort’s pain and the sweating.

The practice of physical activity helps your body exercise and is good for your health and serves as a positive distraction for your mind. Sport improves your intellectual performance, promotes your sleep, reduces anxiety, and facilitates the evacuation of stress. It is a fact! Our most valuable advice: don’t neglect sports, your body and your brain will thank you. (1)

4. Get enough sleep

Sleeping well is an essential condition for successful stress management. Why? Have you ever realized that you become edgier whenever you feel tired? Or that you slept badly? It’s normal. When you sleep poorly, your body suffers.

This leads to increased inattention, a bad mood, and has an immediate impact on your mental health, causing anxiety. It is important to get enough sleep. Your body needs it to heal itself by growing necessary cells. If you have trouble sleeping, refer to the previous tip: exercising.

5. Ease tension with your hobbies

The Complete Stress Management Guide

Whether your hobby is going shopping, painting, singing, playing sports, playing cards, or even playing an instrument, you need to make time off to do what you love. Simplify your schedule as much as possible. A few hours of your favorite leisure activity will help you aid your stress management efforts and make you happier. (2)

6. Meditate

Man Meditating

Meditation involves thinking in an organized way. It has many forms which can be fulfilled by performing actions that involve the same movement pattern over and over again, such as walking or swimming. You can meditate by practicing relaxation techniques, stretching, or taking deep breaths.

    • The relaxation technique of meditation is the simples form. Start with a muscle; exert some tension on it for a few seconds, and then relax. Do this with each of your muscles, starting with your toes and working your way up to the rest of your body.
    • The stretching technique is also effective for relieving stress. Gently turn your head in a circle; look straight up and then bend from side to side slowly. Rotate your shoulders.

We often let ourselves be carried away by our thoughts, emotions, and the mess we have in our heads. And that is tiring. A cleaning would do us the greatest good, wouldn’t it?

Meditation is the solution! Do you find that far-fetched? You should not. Meditation has many benefits on the mind, the immune system, and allows you to engage in personal development by looking back on yourself. It is, therefore, an excellent tool for reflection.

Meditation alters the function and brain structure. Daily meditation for several weeks will have many benefits: regulating emotions, memory, stress management, and its reduction, for example, by meditating before an important event or an exam. Meditation also improves attention, the perception of others, and much more. Research also proves that Meditation makes you happier! (3)

7. Be grateful

Gratitude relieves stress

And yes, it’s essential to be grateful for what you have, and it helps to manage stress well. To be reassured is the first reason! It is easier to see in our daily life what we do not have, to complain about it, and therefore to stress to quickly fill this lack / this need than to be grateful for what we have. It is important to recognize what we have or what we do well. Have confidence in yourself. You are alive, and if that isn’t already a good reason to smile.

8. Don’t worry too much

The Complete Stress Management Guide

Don’t spend so much time worrying over things that are beyond your control. Things like bad weather conditions or unreciprocated affection. Instead, get occupied with handling little things that you can. This can help you feel in charge.

9. Look for solutions.

Always strive to resolve conflicts with other people in an amicable way to prevent further aggression.

10. Be realistic

Set personal and work realistic goals. Avoid overloading your schedule.

11. Be prepared.

Prepare yourself as best you can for events that you know can be stressful, like a job interview.

12. Relax


Take the time to stop and do nothing. Relaxation is will help you relax your muscle, reach consummation, and access a widespread psychological state of calm. Whether you have a lot of responsibility due to your job, status, or role, you need to let go at some point and without feeling guilty.

13. Learn to breathe well

Breathe well

Deep, relaxed breathing is an immediate antidote or coping mechanism. It enables you to get enough oxygen and activates your body’s relaxation response. But don’t get us wrong; breathing well is not something that won’t require your effort. It is a mindful action as learning to breathe well will help you to refocus on yourself and become fully aware of your mind.

 When we inhale air, we can imagine that we are filling ourselves with clean air, oxygen, good thoughts, and positive energy. By breathing out the other way around, we release carbon dioxide, releasing our worries, negative thoughts, and everyday life pressures.

Breathing well is, therefore, important and relieves stress. Consequently, it helps us to stress less and is a legitimate stress management technique that we absolutely must practice, and in addition, we are lucky. It costs us nothing and only lasts a few minutes.

Exercise: Sit alone in a quiet corner and exhale slowly through your mouth while gradually drawing your stomach in. Then breathe the air into your lungs while inflating your belly for a few seconds. Hold your breath for a short while. Finally, release the air while deflating your stomach (if you have difficulty synchronizing, put your hands on your stomach; this will help you to expel the air by pressing on it).

Repeat the exercise several times!

14. Yoga

Woman doing yoga

Neglected for many years by the majority of people, yoga has now proven its worth and has become one of the most practiced activities in Western countries.

Yoga is the practice of a set of postures and breathing exercises aimed at providing physical and mental well-being. We recommend that you try this effective stress management technique solution to alleviate your anxiety!

Yoga will firstly allow you to free up time for yourself, to devote certain moments to your inner well-being. It will also allow you to perform exercises, overcome certain problems of flexibility, your physical condition, and master techniques of management of the stress that will serve you every day of your life.

15. Mindfulness

What is mindfulness? It is a matter of realizing what is happening when it is happening without preference. It entails the act of consciously paying attention to the present moment without passing judgment. Most of us are seldom at the present moment. We tend to get caught up in our thinking about past times or future events and what a source of stress! 

We get lost in our thoughts, and we build an image of ourselves. Most of the time, we don’t care what we are doing or what is going on. We are in autopilot mode; we only drive out of habit. 

Mindfulness is, therefore, an excellent way to refocus on yourself and the only method to practice it and through systematic training and teaches us a way of living, as well as to let go. This is another more subtle stress management technique. You have to be in the present moment.

It helps us take a step back from our automatic actions and our thinking pattern, to see things more clearly to respond and not react as we are used to. Its practice is simple and can help us overcome several pathologies!

16. Emotional intelligence

We are nearing the end of our guide, and our last tip is not the least! So, what is emotional intelligence? Emotional intelligence is the ability to monitor one’s own feelings and emotions, to judge/prioritize them among themselves, and to use this information to guide one’s thinking and actions. Indeed, having a better understanding of your emotions and those of others can be a method of stress management and help you control your feelings.

It is also a recognized practice for preventing ‘burnout! Emotional intelligence helps to overcome stressful times and maintain healthier relationships with others, which may prove useful at work and in our interpersonal relationships with those close to us. It makes you want. Achieve this awareness and serenity?

This intelligence is not innate, and its practice is essential for effective stress management. Many online training courses can help you use it and find out more.

17. Eat well

Eat well

Stress can negatively impact your appetite, so ensure that you regularly take balanced diets containing all the essential nutrients your body needs to function properly.

18. Cheer up and have healthy conversations

Try as much as you can to see change as a positive challenge, not a threat. Also, having healthy conversations at home or the workplace can also ease stress. When family members or coworkers make non-offensive jokes, an air of safety fills the room, and anxiety leaves.

19. Discuss challenges

Discuss what is bothering you with a trusted friend, family member, or counselor. After all, it is said that a problem shared is a problem halved.

20. Know how to say no

Do not think of yourself as everybody’s messiah. You cannot possibly grant every request, especially when it inconveniences you tremendously. Handle what you can and decline things you can’t.


We have listed here several methods of stress management techniques. But above all, learn to recognize stressful events and avoid or make adequate preparations for them. Also, be sensitive enough to detect when your body begins to experience stress. Your body’s initial stress warnings will often include tension in the shoulders and neck or clenching the fists. 

Stress can cause critical health conditions or compound already existent ones. Talk to your family doctor whenever you recognize symptoms of stress. This is important to ensure that what you’re experiencing is really stress, not some other ailment.

By Aleksandra Nico

Dr. Aleksandra Nico is a licensed clinical psychologist. She is in private practice in Brunswick and has experience in a wide variety of areas, including mood-related difficulties, anxiety, psychosis, trauma, addictions, personality disorders, and anger management. Dr. Nico completed a Ph.D. at the University of Nevada. Her goal is not to make very good people out of good, but to get the unique out of them.

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