We all know stress. And, in small doses, stress can actually be good for you because it can make you more alert and give you energy. But too much of it, and you’ll find it taking a toll on your mental and physical health.
That’s why it’s so important that you check in on your stress. Do daily checks to ensure you’re giving your body and mind the best care possible.
How to Check Your Stress Level
Use a scale from 1 to 10 (10 being the highest) to determine your current stress level.
Ideally, you want this number to be under a 5. But if you decide you’re at a 7 or more, it’s time for a break. This doesn’t have to be anything disruptive to your day. Here are some suggestions:
- Turn on a song that makes you smile. Do nothing but listen for the duration of that song.
- Call a friend to chat for a few minutes. Maybe a text if you’re unable to talk at the moment.
- Take a 5-minute walk. If you can find somewhere green and leafy, that’s fantastic. If you’re stuck elsewhere, it might be a walk around the parking lot. Find beauty wherever you are.
- Stretch or do some yoga poses. There are a ton of 5-minute yoga videos on YouTube!
If you’re in the middle of something that doesn’t allow you to do any of the above — maybe at work or in the car — simply take 10 deep breaths.
When you finally do have the time, really reflect on exactly why you’re stressed out. Ask yourself these questions:
- Does this really matter?
- If yes, will it matter in a year? In 5 years?
These small daily awareness habits can bring about a big change in your management of stress in the long run. And there’s little that’s better for your health than that!