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  • Writer's pictureBen

It's time for your Stress MOT Test

As we drive our way through life, we all experience bumps in the road. Whether your stresses are majors or minors, take our short quiz below to gauge your stress level and learn how you can keep your pressure low.

Here are some tips to help you reduce stress and feel more in control:

  1. Take five and breathe Practising deep breathing exercises are proven to help when we’re stressed. Simply take a few slow, deep breaths can help you get your heart rate under control and lower your sense of stress. You can also try mindfulness or mediation. If you’re new to meditation, there are many great apps out there like Headspace, Calm & Balance to get you started.

  2. Routine Whether you’re still working from home, or back in your workplace, it’s important to have a routine and maintain a healthy lifestyle by eating well, getting enough rest, prioritising sleep and getting some exercise.

  3. Keep connected Maintaining healthy relationships with people we trust is important for our mental wellbeing. Whether you go for a walk, chat over the phone or video call – talking to others can help. If stress is making you feel lonely or isolated, shared hobbies can also be a good way to meet new people.

  4. Spend time in nature Spending quality time with nature is great for your mental health, it can help reduce stress, balance your mood and help you feel more positive. Being outside not only helps our mental health but also helps boost our immune system as we increase our vitamin D. Find more tips to get outside here.

  5. Tune out Get lost in something you enjoy – whether that’s watching a series/film, reading a good book, listening to a podcast/music, DIY or learning something new. Tuning into something else gives your mind a chance to rest and could help distract you from a stressful situation.

  6. Do something that makes you sweat Exercise releases endorphins in your body, giving you a natural high – a brisk walk, running or playing five-a-side with your mates – any exercise will help. There are plenty of ways to get moving and many of them won’t cost you a penny, as many of us have discovered during lockdown! Find more cheap ways to get fit here.

  7. Focus on the little things In tough times it’s important to focus on the little things that make you feel happy. Each day, take time to reflect and pick out the three things you are grateful for that day, this will help you feel in the moment and focus on the positives.

  8. Be kind to yourself Life is busy, with many pressures and demands to juggle. Learning, observing and engaging in self-care is a key life skill that helps us stay focused, feel happier and often lends itself to a better work-life balance. Practising good self-care can also help you be the best version of yourself by looking after your body and mind – find out more.

  9. Keep your mind active Read, write, play games, do crossword puzzles, sudokus, jigsaws or drawing and painting. You can also learn something new. There are lots of YouTube videos or sites like Udemy where you can learn new skills. Find something that works for you.

  10. Be aware of your emotions (feelings) Our thoughts influence our feelings and affect how we behave. It’s good to acknowledge that some things are outside our control right now. Make a list of everything that is worrying you. Review the list – try not to worry about what you can’t change but put your efforts into what you can control or change.

If you’re struggling, get in touch. Call us on 08081 311 333 or chat with us online. You don’t have to do this alone - we've got your back. And, if you're feeling stressed or worried about the rising cost of living, try our top tips to help reduce your monthly bills. Money worries are one of the biggest reasons why people ask us for help - we're here if and when you need us.

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