Multiple studies show that keeping a journal can help reduce stress as well as symptoms of anxiety and depression. Writing down your thoughts helps you clarify your thoughts and emotions and reflect on your feelings, all in a healthy manner. "The advantages of writing is that there are no rules," says Rebecca Lee, registered nurse and founder of RemediesForMe.com. "It just provides a creative way to privately express your thoughts and emotions."
3. Listening To Music
Putting on your favorite album can do more than just provide you with some pleasant background music. "Music has a calming effect and can be used as stress-relieving therapy," says Lee. Listening to music for at least 30 minutes a day can lower blood pressure, slow down your heart rate, and decrease stress and anxiety, according to Harvard Health.
Even just six minutes of reading is enough to reduce stress, according to research from the University of Sussex. Reading can help ease tension in the muscle as well as reduce heart rate, making it a healthy hobby to take on when you're feeling overwhelmed.
It's time to ditch the stereotype that knitting is just for grandmas. The repetitive movement of knitting helps bring people into the moment, much like meditation, according to Psychology Today. This enhances the release of serotonin, the feel-good neurotransmitter that helps you feel calm and positive.
One might think that dancing is a good form of stress-relief because it requires cardiovascular activity, which can help boost endorphins, but research shows that the de-stressing benefits go beyond just exercise. One Italian found that people who took waltzing classes were happier than participants who just spent time on a bicycle or on the treadmill, according to Psychology Today.
Feeling stressed out? Take a hike. A study from Stanford University found that taking a walk in nature helps to reduce rumination, that pattern of obsessing over negative thoughts. Previous research also showed that walking outside can improve your mood and decrease anxiety.
Adult coloring books have been all the rage recently, and for good reason. Many studies show that art therapy is successful at reducing distress, and it can also help with symptoms of anxiety and depression, according to Medical Daily. Using a coloring book elicits a relaxing mindset similar to meditation, as it allows the brain to switch off your thoughts and focus just on what you're doing in the moment.
9. Playing Video Games
No one is saying you should be spending all your time behind the TV or computer, but a quick game or two is a great way to reduce stress. One study from Texas A&M University found that both men and women who play video games are more able to adopt mental skills to handle stress, become less depressed, and get less hostile during stressful tasks.
As if you needed any more reasons to whip up your favorite batch of cookings. Like coloring or knitting, baking is meditative, and a number of people surveyed by the Great Comic Relief Bake Off use baking to alleviate stress.
11. Owning A Pet
Spending time with your pet can be more than just leisure time. Studies show that keeping animals can reduce tension and improve mood, according to WebMD. Having pets can help you have a sense of responsibility and also help with companionship and prevent social isolation.
Everyone has different interests, but trying out something new could help distract you from everyday life and help keep your nerves at bay.
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