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3 Practical and Healthy Ways to Manage Stress (Updated 2020)

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Did you know that stress management is a skill you can learn?

Just as you can acquire time management or conflict resolution or even better parenting skills, you can develop the ability to manage your stress better.

You can learn to work on your stress triggers and totally improve your life.

You may difficulties in life with moody, demanding teens, trying to make ends meet, trying to start a work from home biz …… the list is endless. Just know that you are not alone.


2017 Gallup poll found:

About eight in 10 Americans say they frequently (44%) or sometimes (35%) encounter stress in their daily lives. Just 17% say they rarely feel stressed, while 4% say they never do.

But I have your back on this one. This post is for you if you
want to learn to do a few simple stress management activities and rewire your life for happiness.



This post tackles:
•   What stress is
•   How the body reacts to stress
•   Symptoms of stress
•   How self-care helps with stress relief
•   How sleep helps reduce stress
•   How to use exercise to destress

Ready? Let’s get to it then.


What does your stress feel like? Can you even describe it?

Imagine carrying a load that is 3 times your body weight. You’ve stumbled beneath its weight and borne it for a long time.

But you’ve now reached a state of near collapse and you need the heavy, painful burden to be lifted. Or else ….. You simply can’t take any more.

Is this what you’re feeling?


This extract from an infographic on stress illustrates the effect of stress on the body in a dangerous situation.

pic of what happens in the body during a stress attack

See, your body enters into a fight or flee mode to help you to protect yourself – you fight the threat or you flee it.

Imagine dealing with teenagers, managing a home and trying to start a side hustle if your mind and body are walking a constant tightrope.


Here’s a helpful YouTube video that highlights the symptoms of stress


Troubling picture, isn’t it?

Okay. Let’s plot a route to cultivate good habits to help you kick the stressors out the door for good. I’ll walk you through the process in this post.


To free yourself from the tentacles of stress, you need to pinpoint your triggers. Here’s what you need to do:

•  Pick 3 times in the day when you feel overwhelmed
•  Note the activity that is the cause of your tension

For example, you may find mornings a nightmare- your teen not up on time, whining about breakfast, late for carpool and so on.

What you are doing is a kind of stocktaking of all your stressors. Once, you’ve got a list of the stuff that winds you up, you can get to work to cut them out.

Here are a few surprisingly simple things to do to start the process to cut stress from your life.



For starters, take time to care for your bruised spirit.

I know you’re thinking. There are only 24 hours in the day. So where will you find the time? Right?

Actually, you have to make the time. Get up an hour earlier to carve out some time for yourself.

Leo Babauta, in a post on 10 Benefits of rising Early and How to Do it wrote:

The early morning hours are so peaceful, so quiet. It’s my favorite time of day. I truly enjoy that time of peace, that time to myself, when I can think, when I can read, when I can breathe.

You’re thinking you’ll be too tired to get up earlier. Here’s the thing, if you want to be happy, you have to take care of yourself first.

What to do:

Start a simple me-time ritual to charge yourself for the day ahead.

–  Deep breathing to centre yourself
–  Light stretching – consider simple yoga
–  A cup of coffee in the garden
–  Read a spiritual/motivational book
–  Listen to your favourite hymn/piece of music

A simple self - care routine allows you to meet any challenge head-on. Click To Tweet

Cameron Diaz wrote on the benefits of prioritizing yourself in
The Body Book:

You will laugh with your kids more often than you snap at them…… You will smile more. Enjoy your days more. Even the “ must do’s ” of life seem less daunting.

Seems to me, this simple step will smooth the way to a stress – free day. So why not try it?


Right, now you have to get your body into gear so you can move from exhausted to energized.

Focus on just 3 things:
•  Sleep
•  Diet
•  Exercise


Ever grounded your teen for a week only to find out that he had a valid reason for breaking his curfew?

Found yourself flooded with guilt after that?

Because you know the real reason – drop down dead exhaustion from sleeplessness and endless chores.

The National Sleep Foundation states that sleep is vital to your mental health and physical well – being.

Not getting good sleep regularly causes fatigue, irritability, and moodiness. This strains your relationship with loved ones when you take your fatigue – fuelled anger out on them.

Studies carried out by The National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute show that a lack of sleep changes activity in parts of the brain that are used in problem-solving.

This explains why you find yourself unable to cope with the demands of managing your home and trying to start your online business. The overload stresses you out which takes its toll on your mental and physical health.

So take steps to set up a healthy sleep routine.

–  Go to bed at the same time every day.
–  Avoid coffee and tech of any kind as they are stimulants
–  Drink camomile tea
–  Make the bedroom conducive to sleep – comfy bed, not too much light or noise.
–  Start an evening routine – read an inspirational book, listen to calming music to prepare your body for sleep


What you eat is especially important to fight stress. Some foods have superman powers to help you in your battle with stress.

Watch this YouTube video to find out the superfoods you need to eat to beat stress



Read 10 Powerful Foods that Reduce Stress and Improve your Life for more information on this.

I’ve created a 7-Day Superfood Meal Plan to help you get started with a plan to eat healthy foods that reduce stress. Just print and keep handy when you’re planning your menus and in no time at all, you can kiss stress goodbye.

Just click the graphic below to get immediate access to it.

7 - day superfood meal plan pinterest pinEXERCISE

I know …. you don’t have the time or energy to think never mind exercise. A good exercise program is a must to perk your mindset.

The Mayo Clinic states that exercise helps to curb stress and anxiety.


Have you ever found yourself in a good mood after walking the dogs?

Funny, isn’t it? When you exercise regularly, you function better. Regular exercise gives you more energy which boosts your confidence. The result is a greater sense of self-worth.

You feel you can meet any challenge head-on.


woman with hands to head and table with many things on it

Start by taking a walk. This is an immediate mood booster. Chatting with a neighbor or taking in the splendour of roses in the park shifts the focus away from yourself and your issues.

Build exercise into your daily routine. Do simple things at first to make it a routine. For example, walking the dogs daily.

Gardening is another good habit to grow. Weeding, turning over the soil, planting and watering plants give you a sense of purpose and joy. Just the sight of a flowering pot of begonias is enough to cancel all your cares.

If you think yoga is only for ashram types, you’re dead wrong.

Anna Coventry, a fellow stressee, discusses the numerous advantages of yoga in 6 Ways Yoga Can Help You Reduce Stress | DOYOUYOGA

•   Removes tension in the body.
•   Calms both mind and body
•   Stills the stressed mind
•   Teaches good breathing
•   Balances moods

Here’s an example of 4 yoga poses that help when you’re feeling overwhelmed.

pic of 4 yoga poses to relieve stress

You may be, though, so fuelled by anger and frustration that you need more vigorous activities. Good ideas are Kickboxing, boxing, running, basketball – anything that gets the heart rate up and causes you to break into a sweat.

Group exercises like cycling, aerobics, and rowing are also great. The added bonus is the company of like-minded people working to improve their fitness levels.

The result for you is meeting new people, finding a new interest and working on a calm mindset.

Any form of physical activity produces endorphins, the feel-good hormone, in the body. So after a workout, you feel like you’re riding the crest of a wave and that nothing is impossible.

A regular fitness routine transforms your life filling it with positivity and happiness.


So, moms, there’s no need to be overwhelmed. No need to yearn for me and free time.

You can make your life zoom from dull and dreary to brisk and bouncy in no time at all.

Stress-reducing steps to take:
–  Prioritize yourself
–  Start a me-time morning ritual.
–  Ensure that you get good quality sleep.
–  Improve your diet with superfoods.
–  Get rid of stress with daily exercise.

Do you have any successful stress management techniques? Share them in the comments below.

If you enjoyed this post, please help to share it on Pinterest, Twitter, and Facebook because I need your help to spread the word about these 3 awesome stress management tips.





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75 thoughts on “3 Practical and Healthy Ways to Manage Stress (Updated 2020)”

  1. What great tips!! Music & driving are my top 2 stress relief! Self care is so important & so hard to do as well!

  2. This is such wonderful information. You have a lot of great thoughts here. My favorite way to manage stress is to go out and listen to live music. I just love dancing and laughing with friends and it helps me so much!

  3. Thanks so much for very enlightening info. With it I understand how getting proper amounts of all three can definitely help reduce stress. Thanks for sharing!

  4. These are great tips! It’s amazing what even taking a short walk can do on a day when I’m feeling stressed. I also love sensory deprivation (float) tanks to just completely unplug and relax.

  5. Thank you for sharing this great article about how to deal with stress! I know from my own experience how important it is to learn how to cope with the daily demands of work, family and everything else going on! I epecially liked the photos you shared on the various yoga positions.

  6. I had no clue foods were impactful to stress. Now thinking about it, it makes perfect sense. Thank you. Thank you so much

  7. You have touched on important areas we need to focus on in order to lower stress. I am currently battling fatigue and chronic illness; it makes maintaining a healthy diet so difficult as some days I am unable to drive to get the groceries. I have to remind myself that I am doing my best and do what I can each day. I find it important to go out for a walk, and picking up my daughters pup and taking her out for fresh air too really helps lower my stress.

  8. I have so much stress in my life. Managing the staff is exhausting! I can’t even imagine those that need to do their own housework or take care of their own children. This is really helpful because I have lots of free time and I need to fill it with something. So, filling it with managing my stress just makes sense. I’m going to use all of your tips! Thank You!

  9. This came at a perfect time. I’ve been over stressed lately and I look forward to trying some of your suggestions. Thank you!

  10. These are some great tips – I love the one about exercise. I exercise 3 times a week and really have noticed it is during that time my mind waders into a place that nothing can get me down!

  11. Nice information. I was working out several days a week. Then life happened, and I stopped. I felt the tension building up in my body. More recently, I started back working out. Working out, coffee and meditation, are my go to when I feel stressed

  12. Stress headaches are awful, being a mummy means you can definitely wear your self too thin. Some really great tips for her to combat stress. Really helpful xx

  13. Stress or tension headaches are the worst! I definitely need to sit down and figure out what my stress triggers are.

  14. Great article Poovanesh. It is so important to reduce stress as it does so much harm to our bodies. Fortunately there are heaps of good tips out there such as your articles. I love the thing that Cameron Diaz said about snapping at your kids. I have felt guilty about that on occasions…

  15. I needed this, I have been so stressed lately with all that’s going on in my life. Definately some tips taken on board.

  16. Great article. I loved all of the graphics. I think that early morning self care is so important. I try to do yoga every morning if possible. It really sets the tone for the rest of my day. Thank you.

  17. I always get stressed about things in life. I learned throughout the years that I should take things easy and take one thing at a time. But, you know, I can’t help it. I get enough sleep and exercise regularly. Thanks for sharing these great tips that I could reduce my stress through foods! I’ll need to try!

  18. This is such an interesting detailed analysis of stress! I’ve been studying this topic myself for a very long time but this made even me stop and think at points! Btw totally agree that enough sleep is one of the most important things to avoid stress!

  19. Isn’t it amazing how much things like our diets and exercise routines affect how stressed we are? I’ve noticed I can handle stress so much better since focusing on eating wholesome foods!

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