Finding the perfect match, getting your dream job, being promoted, getting married, having a child are all positive situations that make us feel happy and satisfied with our lives.
But sadly sometimes they require a lot of effort and could cause stress. And stress leads to serious health problems and exhaustion.
Unfortunately, it could actually turn out that while we are pursuing happiness, we become rather unhappy.
That is why, the Russian psychologist, psychotherapist, and author of more than 30 books on practical and popular psychology Dr. Mikhail Litvak states that it is essential to have an insight of ourselves, to know who we are and what we need.
He also explains that our happiness, as well as both personal and professional success, are defined by our lifestyle and what we do to achieve our goals.
Nonetheless, living the best possible way is not always a simple task. For this reason, we have asked several specialists to share their experience and tell us some tips they use to help their patients.
Below are outlined 7 easy tips which could help you reduce stress and live a happier life.
1. Always look on the bright side of things.
According to Dr. Alicia H. Clark, Psy.D., you can have some positive effect coming from stressful moments too. For example, if you’re stressed because you’re up against an intense work deadline, don’t forget that the stress is motivating you to get things done.
“The sensation of pressure doesn’t have to be negative—it can be a positive challenge and motivating,” Dr. Clark says. Or, if you don’t have a free weekend to yourself in the next two months, consider how it’s pretty high that you’ve got such a rich social life these days. In many cases, it’s all about how you view it.
And, of course, if you’re always stressed, and there isn’t any change, take that as a warning sign that you need to find ways to scale back before you burn out.
2. Try to find enough time to relax.
If you are too busy, you might need to step away from what you’re doing. That is why it is crucial to find enough time for rest. To feel more relaxed and decrease the levels of stress in your everyday life, you might try short walks. They could be soothing for both your physical and mental well-being. Here is what David Klow, licensed marriage and family therapist, founder of Chicago’s Skylight Counseling Center and author of the upcoming book You Are Not Crazy: Love Letters from Your Therapist advises:
“Getting out into the world and connecting with life is usually healing, as is the rhythmic nature of walking. It can help get you out of your head and into the world.” Try taking a walk when you first get up or after dinner, or try scheduling 20 minutes into your work calendar to remind you to step out for a bit.”
Here is the opinion of the licensed clinical psychologist John Mayer, Ph.D. Author of Family Fit: Find Your Balance in Life:
“Negative thoughts are just a part of life, but they don’t have to consume you. Instead of trying to ignore those thoughts altogether, try outweighing them with positive statements. For example, if you’re feeling anxious and regretful about staying in bed til noon one day, follow that with a reminder that you needed some extra rest and alone time this week. You can get back out there tomorrow.”
4. Keep your true friends close
Everyone has buddies they could go clubbing or could gossip with. But our real friends are the ones who we could always call, text, or email when we need help or advice. They are the best therapy one could get when feeling stressed or depressed. Here is what Klow thinks about that:
“By building a list of people that you trust, with whom you can talk to in times of need, you allow yourself a strong sense of not being alone,” he says. The next time you’re struggling, check out your list and reach out to someone on it. Then, work your way down if someone you love isn’t free to talk.
5. Take things easy, and don’t panic if your life is not going as planned.
The best way to get your life in order is not to hurry to fulfill your goals or to follow any plans at any price. Stick to your values, your non-negotiables for how you do business, treat your loved ones with care and respect. Things sooner or later will fall into place.
‘Everyone has his specific vocation or mission in life; everyone must carry out a concrete assignment that demands fulfillment. Therein he cannot be replaced, nor can his life be repeated. Thus, everyone’s task is unique as his specific opportunity to implement it.”
The words above belong to Viktor Frankl. He was an Austrian neurologist and psychiatrist who is also a Holocaust survivor. He is the founder of logotherapy.
6. Be grateful.
Carolyn Kaloostian, MD, MPH, is an assistant professor of clinical family medicine. She is a primary care physician from the Department of Family Medicine. According to her gratefulness is one of the primary sources of happiness. Here is what she thinks:
“Review what you are grateful for. It doesn’t matter if you do it in the morning, at lunch, or in the evening. All that matters is you are specific when you do it – and that you do it once a day. This will help you set your attitude towards a state of abundance and attract more happiness into your life.”
Being aware of all the things life has blessed us with is extremely important! These things could make us keep our confidence and stay happy most of the time.
7. Remember – sometimes it takes sadness to know happiness.
Be happy most of the time means that feeling sad is OK in some situations because happiness cannot go without a certain dose of sadness. Below is Carl Jung’s brilliant explanation why sadness and happiness go hand in hand:
“Even a happy life cannot be without a measure of darkness, and the word happy would lose its meaning if it were not balanced by sadness. It is far better to take things as they come along with patience and equanimity.”
How do you handle the stress in your life?
Please, share your experience with us.