Coping with Stress in a Healthy Way
Coping Mechanisms are a conscious effort to ease your mind’s negativity.
Stress, anxiety, depression, anger and any other negative emotion can redirect your focus at any given time. These emotions cloud your judgement and overall make your day and/or life a nightmare. As someone who lives with depression (I’ll speak on it another time), I wish I had learned about this sooner. Depression is hard to go through because you can have all the friends and family in the world supporting you but the sadness and hopelessness comes from within.
Anxiety, anger, stress, etc are pretty similar to it. Your own mind giving in to the negative thoughts and worries. Coping mechanisms are things we already know that allow us to make sense of these thoughts. The thing is picking out which ones work for you and which ones do not. A bad coping mechanism would be substance abuse and sadly it’s very common.
If you really want to understand someone as a person, look at their coping mechanisms. If it’s something positive like crying (yes crying is positive and ok to do), using an “I feel…” message, or breathing techniques then they’re good company to keep. They have a clear understanding of themselves as a person and know how to empty their negativity in a healthy way. If someone has negative coping mechanisms like violence, shutting down or negative self-talk then they most likely need some guidance, a good friend or a therapist. They could be battling inner demons (and we will not get involved because priority #1 is always you).
Alright! Now to some coping strategies!
First, stress. For those who are online taking classes and need a real quick way to cope with the shit your professor is throwing at you, here are a few I found useful. Deep breaths, stretching, saying “I can do this”, eat a HEALTHY snack, use a stress ball, give someone a hug, smile, or write everything down. For me, deep breaths work wonders because it’s like a quick meditation. I refocus on what I need to do and organize it to fit my schedule. I really don’t understand why professors think it’s ok to give us more of a workload than we have in class. It makes no sense.
Now for the anxiety and anger inducing situations.
Deep breaths is the #1 thing to do because you can hyper focus on something other than what’s bothering you. Another good thing to do is to take a breather and enjoy your surroundings. It’s better to come back to something later with a level head so you don’t make any mistakes. Spend 5 minutes with your pet, go for a short walk, drink some tea, go to YouTube for a little bit, do yoga, go through your social media and reminisce, etc. Just do something healthy to calm yourself.
While you use healthy coping mechanisms, get the JKing No Crown Necessary Hoodie to keep the positive energy in the air.
Being angry is a waste of energy. Hurting others and yourself because of it is unnecessary. If you become angry because you were provoked then simply walk away. Putting your pride aside and just walking away is the best and greatest thing anyone can do. When you walk away it makes the other person look dumb for letting the situation get to them. Now if you have anger issues it's a different story. That's where coping mechanisms come into play. To calm yourself down, take a deep breath or breaths and try to get back on track. Ask yourself "What do I need to do right now?" and carry on with your day.
Depression or depressive emotions.
Now depression is my specialty because I was diagnosed with severe depression last year in January. Thankfully I am here, happy and healthy sharing my experiences with it in hopes it can help someone else. For me, now that the sun is out, I usually go outside for a little because the sun (Vitamin D) is known to increase serotonin. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that plays a role in appetite, aggression, and mood.
People with depression have low serotonin levels because a part of their brain is not functioning properly. I usually try my best to stay positive and use these coping mechanisms whenever I’m down. Other than the natural vitamin D, a good coping mechanism would be to go through memories, draw, write in a journal, meditate for at least 10 minutes, watch a movie you like, list 10 positive things about yourself, and last but not least talking to someone.
A friend or family member would be a good option just to vent but they all seem to know what is best for you. They’re all biased to what they believe in and not what you do. That’s why a therapist is so important for people to talk to when they’re at a loss for what to do. A therapist is not someone who will get in your head or trick you into thinking a certain way. A therapist is a neutral party that has you in their best interest. They are there to help you get a better understanding of who you are as a person.
Alright that’s it for me. Remember it’s ok to cry, take a deep breath, meditate, the sun is good for you (so go for a walk if it isn’t too cold), and it’s ok to feel these emotions as long as you have a healthy way of releasing them. Ok guys! See ya! Stay safe!