Identify your triggers.
Once you know where your stress is coming from—a relationship, kids, workload, a health problem—you can sometimes reduce or prevent the stress. After giving the matter some focused thought, you may identify practical steps to improve the situation. Even if changing the trigger isn’t possible, a shift in perspective may help mitigate stress. For example, if a friend is pushing your buttons, stepping back and adjusting your expectations may allow you to keep this close bond.
Maintaining, improving, and increasing healthy relationships with supportive friends and family powerfully promotes resilience. Many find that connections with a faith family, neighbors, and even pets, help them feel positive and energetic, even if children and grandchildren aren’t close at hand.
Physical activity releases feel-good endorphins. Taking short walking breaks several times a day is a powerful tool for channeling stress. Exercising or joining yoga, dance, or tai chi classes with friends also helps achieve step 2—staying connected.
Find your “pause” button.
“After experiencing times of great change, high demand, or significant loss, it’s essential to press pause and rest. Often creating time and space for rest means saying “no” to invitations and requests for help, at least temporarily,” says Callahan. Consider spending quiet time daily: contemplation, reflection, and breathing fosters resilience and calm.