You might be surprised to learn that a bit of stress can actually be a healthy part of daily life. It’s true, it can help us remain motivated and productive. Prolonged stress, however, can cause health problems and make travel-related conditions like motion sickness, jet lag or occasional sleeplessness worse. Luckily, there are plenty of steps you can take to keep your stress levels in check.
How stress affects your body
Different types of stressors can affect your body in different ways:
Good stress – whether you’re trying to hit a deadline or preparing for a big speech, these positive stressors are short lived. They can cause your body to release adrenaline, quickening your breathing and heartbeat – giving you more energy as a result.
Bad stress – if you’re stressed for longer periods of time due to negative feelings, it can have a damaging effect on your physical and mental health, resulting in things like headaches, digestive issues and high blood pressure.
8 simple stress-busters
Get to the source – determining the root cause of your stress will help you fix it.
Think positive thoughts – try not to be so hard on yourself and avoid negative talk.
Get physical – walk, do some exercise or take up a new sport.
Watch your diet – more fruits, veggies and whole grains. Less sugar, caffeine and alcohol.
Sleep more – set a regular schedule and stick to it.
Slow down – look for ways to reduce the number of commitments you have and free up time just for you.
Take a break – reading, hobbies and sports can give you a “mental holiday” from stress
Get support – friends, work colleagues, family members or your family physician are all good people to talk to.