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Make time for loved ones | As you get older it can be tricky to co-ordinate schedules and spend time with the ones that lift you up. My friends and I have recently agreed to penciling in the second Saturday of every month to spend with each other doing whatever. It doesn't have to be a big thing, just something to look forward to and break up the mundane.
Do more of what makes you happy | You wouldn't believe how content I feel when I step out of my local library. I love reading, but it's the act of actually visiting the library that brings me the most joy. I'm never happier than with arms laden with books as I make my way out of that little building. It's a small act, but one that I'd given up on for years after racking up such huge late return fees. Now I've scheduled regular visits into my routine, and I really look forward to Library Tuesday.
Spend within your means | Money is a big source of stress for me. I've taken on quite a few financial commitments lately and I'm feeling the strain. I'm not one for mass overspending, but I definitely feel less stressed when I'm not living with Buyer's Remorse.
Declutter | Tidy house tidy mind and all that, right? It's so much more clarifying for my mind when my surroundings are free from mess. I've recently detoxed my wardrobe as well; it feels strangely liberating to be ruthless with my clothes
Refocus | Maybe it's time for you to move on from areas of your life that are bringing you down. I try to think that if something doesn't make me happy, then it's up to me to fix it. Don't sit and moan about it if you aren't prepared to take steps to change things. You are the key to your own happiness! << how many cliches can I fit into one paragraph?! Cheesy it may be... it's true. And whilst taking those steps away from what you know can be scary, I find that even taking the time to think about other options can leave me feeling much more positive.
Get a good night's sleep | If I'm running low on sleep, I'm a teary, short-tempered, foul-mouthed demon. Which is why sleep is always a priority for me. Indisputably it has a major effect on moods and functioning, so making the effort to get to bed at a reasonable time can really help minimise stress.
Do what you can do | I read a lot about stress a while ago, and one of the things that resonated with me was conscientiousness. A more conscientious person will feel more stress because they always put pressure on themselves to do their very best, whatever the circumstance. I'm not saying this is a bad thing, but take the time to consider whether it's reasonable that you can actually achieve the things you've set yourself. If it's not, and there are external factors working against you, it's time to step back and do what you can actually do. You're only human.
See the positives | At times it can seem like it's all doom and gloom. It isn't! Retrain yourself to see the positives and you'll soon feel like a weight is lifted off your shoulders. The smallest thing can be positive; when I first started trying to think like this, that very morning I got stuck in a traffic jam at roadworks. But I was able the last car to get through the lights before they turned red again. Positives, see!
Stress is a constant battle for me, but I'm all for hearing how you manage to limit your stress. Please, tell me below if you have any extra tips!