10 Ways to Feel Better When You’re Stressed Out & Unhappy
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Have you ever had one of those testing days where the world seems blue? Or a day when you can’t shake off the feeling of unhappiness no matter how hard you try? These feelings are common when you are strained out or worried, and most people feel like they are stuck in an endless loop of misery. However, don’t lose hope because you can feel better when you’re stressed out if you put a little effort into it.
Let’s start by talking about what exactly stress is before we learn how to combat this beast and feel better as soon as possible.
How to Feel Better When You’re Stressed Out & Unhappy
But first – what exactly is stress?
While a certain level of stress called Eustress helps you perform better in exams or sports, too much stress can interfere with your daily activities and render you, well, useless. If you are always stressed out in testing times, you will feel unhappy and helpless, which ultimately puts a lot of strain on your body and mind.
What does stress do to your body?
When our body goes through a demanding task, the brain responds by producing hormones that put our body in a state of stress. Stress can be triggered by multiple factors that challenge our body, including external and internal stimuli. You may be stressed over a difficult situation at work or a problem in your relationships, or it may be an internal factor like lack of sleep or anxiety. All these situations put your body in a state of stress which makes your body produce the hormone cortisol.
These hormonal factors cause a variety of changes in the body, which are the symptoms we associate with stress and unhappiness. They include a disturbed sleep pattern, tense muscles, irritable mood, anxiety, and even depression.
Needless to say, being stressed out isn’t good for your mental or physical health… Bet hey, there’s always something you can do to make the situation easier. Here are a few ideas you can try to feel better when you’re stressed out and unhappy.
P. S. You will be okay, little soul. Don’t give up yet.
How To Feel Better: 10 Ways To Relieve Stress & Improve Your Mood
When you are overwhelmed by stress and worry, the best thing you can do is stop for a second and just breathe! A few deep breaths will do wonders to clear your head, and you will feel a bit calmer in only a few seconds. Continuous breathing works even more, so a short breathing session is the first thing to do when you want to feel better.
Start by breathing normally, then increase the depth of your breath and take in as much air as you can. Focus on the air as it expands your chest and fills your lungs, and try to forget about the problem that’s been bugging you – just focus on the breath. Slowly exhale the air through your mouth, and repeat a few minutes.
2. Go for a walk
If you find yourself in a situation that is giving you anxiety, taking a walk and moving away for a few minutes can do wonders. Not only will your mind be distracted from the ongoing issue, but you will also benefit from a stream of endorphins released during exercise.
Walk at a brisk speed for 10-15 minutes, with some uplifting music or with a friend if you prefer the company. This will allow you to feel better, regroup, and put things in perspective before you go back and review the situation.
3. Don’t be afraid to get emotional support
There is nothing like a good friend (or even a therapist) to help you navigate through an awkward situation, so don’t be afraid to ask for help. Having a support system is a beautiful idea because it feels great when someone really listens to your problems, and you may even find a solution to your problem together.
Hanging out with people you love can make you feel better and also distract you from the issue at hand, so your mind can disconnect for a while.
4. Take a proper meal and drink water
As you go through a stressful day at work, you may not find the time to eat a proper meal or drink plenty of water. However, the quick vending machine lunch does nothing to energize your body. Combine that with the numerous cups of coffee you consume in a stressful situation, and you have a recipe for disaster!
Even when you are going through a tough time, it is vital to take care of your body. Proper nourishment is an absolute must if you’re trying to feel better, or calm down.
Keep your body fueled by eating a nutritious meal and drinking plenty of water throughout the day to keep you healthy and alert.
5. Get a massage
When you are stressed out, you can often feel that your muscles are knotted and tense. This can make you feel very uncomfortable, but you can combat it by getting a gentle, warm massage. Whether you go to a masseuse for a luxurious treatment, ask your loved to help, or do it yourself, a massage will help ease up the tension in your body and take the edge off your stress. I always, always feel better after a massage, even if I’m completely mentally exhausted.
6. Get some rest
When nothing else seems to make you feel better and improve your mood, taking a nap will almost always work. Sleep is essential to keep your mind and body healthy, and it helps to combat the signs of stress, like mental tension and anxiety. When you go to sleep, you take a much-needed break from the chaos around you, and your mind can reset itself.
7. Write down your thoughts
Writing down your problems in a journal can help you to de-stress as it is a great way to express your emotions, especially the unpleasant ones. Jot down everything that happens throughout the day and how it makes you feel, puts things in perspective to see the big picture. You will notice that you feel better, as if you were talking to someone and venting out.
My printable self-help tools like Worry Journal and Thought Workbook are designed to help you and guide you through this process and I recommend you to try them. They are very simple to use, but they help you to process negative feelings in a healthy and calming way. I use them myself when stress or a negative situation is bringing me down.
8. Let the emotions out
Are you in a helpless situation and stressed out beyond your limit? As I mentioned before, it’s important to accept the feelings instead of suppressing them. How can you acknowledge your feelings, besides journaling? By crying them out! Yes, crying will not only let you relieve that emotion overload, but it also gives you the power to get over the problem and start fresh. Sulk like a child or vent out your feelings while hugging a loved one, and believe it or not, most of the time you’ll feel better after that.
9. Remove yourself from the stressor
If something is constantly making you feel stressed and unhappy, you might find yourself in a situation where removing yourself from the stressor is the only way to finally feel better.
If the situation can’t be changed and is continuously breaking you, think whether it could be an option to remove yourself from it. Of course, it’s not an easy decision to make, but if all the signs are telling you that it’s better for you to go away, and if you don’t have any moral obligation to stay, then walk away.
10. Feel better by accepting what you can’t change
We like to take control of all situations, but sometimes it’s not possible to alter reality. You need to accept that some things are beyond your control. Instead, focus on what you can influence with your actions. Adopting this mentality will put your mind at ease and allow you to take care of the important stuff in life.
Being stressed and unhappy all the time takes a toll on your mental and physical health, that’s for sure… But if you are reading this article, the chances are that you are tired of stress dictating your life, and you are finally ready to let go of those feelings and feel better. Try to implement as many of these solutions as you can to feel better and feel a weight lifting off your chest. And remember – when faced with a difficult situation, your first aid kit is to breathe, collect your thoughts, and reassure yourself that you will be okay, no matter what.
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