13 Top Tips for Leading a Stress Free Life

Did you know every 2 seconds, 7 people die of stress related illnesses around the world. That's 110 million people every single year, all being wiped off this planet thanks to a little word called stress.

I find the most worrying thing about this statistic is that more often than not it isn't those really big unavoidable stressful events in life that contribute most here, but rather the build up of all the little stresses and frustrations every single day. Over a span of many years they add up and take their toll.

On top of this, the more immediate effects of being stressed cause us lose a significant proportion of brainpower. When we are stressed our brain uses those neural pathways that are most familiar to it as these are quickest and take least effort. This leads to erratic and hasty thinking, missing options and perspectives, and if we can't immediately find a solution to a problem, we end up just going round in circles, only making ourselves more stressed in the process!

Fortunately just be taking a moment to step back there are plenty of simple tips we can put into practice to lead a more stress free life. Which in turn means it will be longer, happier and healthier life too!

Here are my top tips for making your life a little less stressful:

1. Get up fifteen minutes earlier in the morning. The inevitable morning delays and distractions will be less stressful if you aren't pushed for time.

2. Be prepared to wait. Carrying a paperback book with you, can make waiting in a post office or doctors reception almost pleasant.

3. Procrastination is stressful. Whatever you want to do tomorrow, do today; whatever you want to do today, do it now.

4. Always have a contingency plan just in case things don't go quite the way you planned them. 'If for some reason either of us is delayed, here's what we'll do..." Or, "If we get split up here's where we'll meet."

5. Relax your standards. The world will not end if the grass doesn't get mowed this weekend.

6. Turn off your phone. When you want to relax, whether its by taking a long bath, meditating, having a little sleep or reading a book without interruption. Temporarily disconnect or turn off your phone. The probability of there being a terrible emergency in the next hour or so is almost zero.

7. Reframe your perspective on your 'needs' Turn 'needs' into preferences. Our basic physical needs translate into food, water, and keeping warm. Everything else is a preference. Don't get too attached to preferences.

8. Get enough sleep. Sleep is one of the most important processes for allowing your body to regenerate and your mind to get organised and focused. Set your alarm for bedtime.

9. Get yourself organized! A place for everything and everything in its place. Losing things is stressful.

10. Write your thoughts and feelings down on paper. It can help you clarify and give you a renewed perspective.

11. Do one thing at a time. When you are working on one thing, don't think about everything else you have to do.

12. Allow time every day for a little bit of privacy, quiet and thinking. Even if you think you are really busy and just don't have any time for this, find just 5 minutes in your day (and everyone can do that) to just relax, let go and be alone with your thoughts.

13. Everyday, do something you really enjoy.


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