With news of terrorism, racial divide, partisan protests and Presidential politics added to already high levels of stress among Americans, rates of tension have skyrocketed. And there seems to be no let up in what we can expect in the foreseeable future.
Millennials, who lead the other generations in the amount of stress they experience on a daily basis, have recently turned to an unusual stress reduction technique – Pokemon GO. Chasing little virtual icons in the real world and capturing them has become a way for Millennials to have some fun as they distract themselves from the seemingly uncontrollable events taking place in their lives.
If you are feeling physically and emotionally exhausted yourself, here are some additional tips to help keep your pressures in check:
Reach out to family and friends for support. Ask for help and validation of your emotions and find a non-judgmental ear to help sort out your concerns. Start a journal to aid you in the process of confronting your anxiety.
Draw on your strengths. Use those you have relied on in the past as well as those you have developed more recently. Brainstorm new ways to apply the abilities you have in a creative, novel way.
Use relaxation techniques. Set aside time for a regular routine of deep breathing, guided imagery, meditation, yoga or other stress reduction methods that work for you, like humor. Decide to put off worrying – much of what we fear never actually happens.
Create balance in your life between personal needs, work, and family obligations. When you don’t over-commit, you can carve out time for yourself. Like millions, you may find that coloring books for grown-ups are a satisfying way to relax, become calm and stay grounded.
Exercise moderately several times a week. Find an activity you enjoy and stick with – like walking with friends, keeping fit through exercise classes, training at the gym. Get enough sleep to allow your body to recover each day.
Focus on what you can control in your life. Let go of negative thoughts and unrealistic expectations. While you often can’t control circumstances, you can control how you handle them. Clearly define your goals or aspirations and keep focused on them.
Eat sensibly, following a balanced diet of healthy foods. Avoid the use of drugs and alcohol to self-medicate and limit your use of sugar, caffeine and cigarettes to avoid their contribution to your jitteriness.
Be patient with yourself as you try out these strategies. You can begin to recover balance and serenity at your own pace. As long as you keep moving forward, you will eventually reach your destination.