The 6 R’s of Stress Management

  • Rest.  Get enough sleep by exercising, keeping the same sleep schedule all week, and winding down at bedtime. Minimize alcohol, caffeine, and tobacco. Take regular breaks. Make vacations truly relaxing.
  • Run or do other moderate exercise–ideally at least three times a week. Choose an activity you enjoy!
  • Revise your thoughts, behavior, or situation.
    Revise your thoughts: Find a funny way to see the situation. What would your favorite   comedian say?  How will you look back on yourself in two years?  Challenge negative thoughts such as black-and-white thinking, and “awfulizing.”
    Revise your behavior: Practice direct communication. Asking for what you want beats pouting, complaining, or exploding. Create more free time through better time management.
    Revise your situation: If you can’t accept or adapt to a situation, or if the situation is harming you, explore your options. At work, this could mean changing your job responsibilities, moving to another department, or leaving the organization.
  • Reach out to others.  Visit friends.  Join a club or organization of people who share your interests. Join a support group, or start your own support group.
  • Relax.  Try deep breathing, relaxation tapes, meditation, massage, music, guided imagery, yoga, tai chi…
  • Reconnect with nature.  Bring in houseplants, adopt an animal from a shelter, start a garden, walk to a park, or visit a wildlife sanctuary or refuge.