This daily routine has been proven to lower stress levels
12th Apr 2021
Feeling more stressed lately? This daily routine can help lower your anxiety levels and get you back on track.
Over the past year, most of us have experienced a heightened amount of stress from the pandemic. Many have lost their jobs or were asked to work from home, schools shut down, shops and businesses closed their doors – all of which has forced us to spend more time isolated and indoors.
A recent study found that since Covid-19 restrictions began, 72% of people in Ireland have felt more anxious and 54% have experienced more panic than usual. Now, more than ever, it’s important to protect and prioritise our mental wellbeing and find a healthy way to manage our high stress levels.
So where do we start? It’s best to begin with simple changes we can make to our daily routine. Here are some small steps we can take that have been proven to benefit our mental health.
Get moving and stay motivated
Exercise can be a great way to relieve stress, but the tricky part is to finding the right balance. Too little activity can make you more susceptible to seeing mind events as stressors and too much can lead to physical fatigue, causing more bodily stress. However, the right amount of physical activity can help shield you from reacting to stress.
A great way to motivate yourself to exercise is by setting daily goals. The Fitbit Sense has some great tools to help you get moving, including daily challenges to help you reach activity goals like steps, distance and floors climbed and movement reminders to motivate you. You can also track your physical exercise (GPS runs, swimming, yoga, pilates, spinning, etc.), look after your heart health and check your blood oxygen levels, so you can see how you’re tracking each day.
Regular exercise each morning can help reduce stress in three major ways:
- It releases feel-good endorphins, so you can start the day in a great mood.
- It reduces the negative effects of stress by imitating bodily stress (such as the flight or fight response) and helping your body work through it. It can also improve your overall health.
- It helps you focus on the positive while distracting you from anxious thoughts. Exercise requires full attention, distracting you from your worries and helping shed tension. It often results in increased energy, optimism and a calm clarity.
Check in and recharge
If you’re in the middle of a work day and find yourself with low energy or creativity levels, try and use your lunch hour to check in with yourself and recharge. Have you eaten yet? Had enough water? When was the last time you stood up and stretched, away from the screen?
Here are some great ways to recharge midday.
- Drink water throughout the day and eat healthy, well-balanced meals
It’s important to stay hydrated and make a well-balanced lunch. Take the time to prepare a nutritious meal and rehydrate. (You can log your meals and water intake on the Fitbit app – an easy way to keep yourself accountable.)
- Stay in tune with how you’re feeling by tracking your stress levels.
If you feel overwhelmed, take a step back and ask yourself why. Is it your workload, lack of sleep or having no time for yourself? Take advantage of the Fitbit Sense’s stress management tools with an EDA sensor to help you understand your stress level, complete with useful tools to help. Plus, the daily stress management score helps you know where you are at – if it’s a good day to tackle that tricky project and go for that long run, or if it’s better to opt for a yoga class and an early night.
- Take some time for yourself
Try spending time outside in your back garden or go for a walk (so you can get those steps in!). Changing your environment and getting some sunlight can do wonders for your mood. Also, listening to an audiobook or music while you’re out is a great way to signal your brain that it’s time to change from work mode to relaxation mode.
- Talk to a friend or partner
If you’re social by nature, one way to recharge can be socialising with others. When you have a break, ring your best friend, mam or partner and catch up over a cuppa. This is a great way to help diminish feelings of isolation and stay in contact with those you miss.
Unwind with mindful meditation
Getting enough sleep is one of the best things we can do for our bodies. It’s when the body heals, recovers and restores energy levels for the next morning. To make sure you get a restful and deep night’s sleep, try meditating before bed and implementing a regular sleep schedule.
- Deepak Chopra’s Mindful Method for Fitbit Premium users helps you de-stress and turn off your brain before bed. It’s a collection of ten sessions, including guided meditations, sessions to prepare for restful sleep and techniques to help you cultivate a sense of happiness and optimism whenever you need.
- Try setting a regular bedtime and wake up time with at least eight hours of sleep. This way, your body can adjust, know what to expect and run optimally with the right amount of rest.
To learn more about how to manage your stress levels, visit Fitbit Stress Management.
Fitbit Sense — the advanced smartwatch focused on health that helps you tune in to your body, understand and manage your stress levels, and guides you toward a better well-being. Click here to learn more