Tip of the Week – Six ways to 'stress down'

Published: Wednesday 20th July 2016

July 22 is National Stress Down Day, an initiative from Lifeline that reminds us to be proactive about managing stress. Find out what the six simple strategies are that can help us minimise the effect of stress on our physical, emotional and social wellbeing.

People experience stress in their lives due to pressures relating to work, family, future, health and finances, among other things.

Stress is the body's way of dealing with pressure. Stress can be a positive thing, helping us strive for results during competitive or demanding situations. However, prolonged, chronic stress can be detrimental to our physical, emotional and social wellbeing.

Here are some activities that you can do to help you to 'stress down':

  1. Work out your priorities, including work, family and friends – make lists and tackle one thing at a time. Checking items off a list helps us feel in control and acknowledges what has been achieved.
  2. Identify your stress situations, make a list of situations that tend to drain you emotionally and identify one or two techniques to manage the stress. When these situations occur, see them as an opportunity to practise your stress reduction techniques; then keep notes on what works for next time.
  3. Take your time. Don’t let people rush you. Allow extra time for the unexpected, slow your pace, slow your breathing. If you are frantic, you are actually less efficient!
  4. Look after yourself physically with exercise and relaxation techniques, which also assist emotional wellbeing.
  5. Practice mindfulness. This is where you set your 'frantic' thinking to one side to notice the present moment without making any judgments, good or bad. When frantic thinking is taking hold, stop for a few minutes, take a few breaths and notice what’s happening around you. More mindfulness activities can be found here .
  6. Don’t forget to have fun by scheduling time for activities and people that bring you joy. Don’t underestimate the power of laughter!

You can access a range of resources to help you reduce stress on the AccessEAP website, including information sheets on a range of wellbeing topics and meditation and relaxation recordings.

Follow these simple steps:

  • Click on this link that will take you to the Access EAP website client area
  • Enter your staff email address
  • Follow the prompts to create a password

AccessEAP provides confidential professional counselling to staff and their immediate families, and can be contacted on 1800 818 728 for an appointment.