Your weekly dose of stress relief: Volume 15

By Doug Mattushek - 16 September 2019Views : 1262

In partnership with Health Grinder, SA Breaking News will be publishing weekly tips and tricks to help reduce your stress levels...

46. Get Moving… Any Type of Physical Activity will Do

While not everyone has the time to exercise, there’s always something you can do to keep active.

Physical activities like washing the dishes, walking the dog, vacuuming or cleaning the house are all common chores that will help you lower the amount of stress in your life.

Physical activity, like moving about or marching in place while watching TV, lowers both adrenaline and cortisol levels.

Studies also indicate that engaging in physical activity reduces our response to stress and anxiety. This in addition to being protective against more serious mental conditions and disorders.

One of the problems however, is stress’ negative effects on our ability to exercise.

As much as being physically active helps fight stress, when we’re under stress research suggest that human behavior makes us avoid exercise.

47. Go Shopping

Women already know this since it’s something we often see.

Retail therapy, or using shopping as a way to cheer yourself up on a bad day, is actually a scientifically proven way of stress relief.

In a paper published in the Journal of Consumer Psychology, University of Michigan researchers found that shopping helps alleviate that feeling of sadness.

The sadness and emotional stress that comes with it, often results from one’s inability to control things in their life or get the results they want.

Shopping on the other hand, restores that control. It gives the consumer the ability to choose for themselves.

It’s important to note that shopping entails being able to choose and not just window shop or browse.

Those who were assigned to the “browse” only group didn’t benefit as much. Only 2% of them felt having control compared to 79% of those who were able to shop and buy.

Shopping style, of course, also varies between genders. So, you shouldn’t judge how your partner goes about it.

Men, for example, often already having something in mind to buy before going shopping. As such, they swoop in, pick up their item, pay and they’re out.

Women meanwhile, enjoy spending time going through the items. They also like talking with friends while looking for other things to purchase.

48. Plan a Vacation (No Need to Go)

Remember how excited you get whenever it’s time to plan for a vacation?

There’s a scientific explanation for why we get in a good mood when we get into vacation planning mode.

It’s all about anticipation.

Research suggests that those who go on vacations are actually happier when planning for the trip and less so during the trip itself.

The study included 1,530 individuals with researchers gathering information from questionnaires.

What they learned from the data was that vacationers were happier than non-vacationers before the trip, but there was no difference in happiness levels between the 2 groups after the trip.

The pre-trip happiness is explained by psychologists at the University of Colorado.

Their investigation found that in events, be it positive (vacation), negative (exam taking), routine (picking up the kids from school) or hypothetical (free trip or prize), the intensity of the emotions were always stronger during the anticipation period and less so when looking back afterwards.