Stress is an ugly word. It conjures up images of sitting in gridlock traffic on a 40-degree day, 30 minutes late for a meeting wearing a wool suit with Nickelback on the radio. How one man handles that situation compared to another isn’t down to his genes… it’s in his strategies. Want to outsmart stress? Try these science-backed tactics.
1. Get mindful
Political coverage, credit card payments, your colleague’s smelly egg sandwiches – there’s a lot a to get worked up about. The number one rule, before everything else, is to flick on your mindful switch when your brain starts flipping out. Mindfulness isn’t pretending that your worries aren’t there, it’s knowing how to take a mental step back and being OK with feeling uncomfortable emotions. You can do this by focusing on your breathing and paying attention to your senses: what can you hear, smell or feel? Focusing on the present rather than letting your mind spiral can help to lower levels of the stress hormone cortisol, says a study by the University of California.
2. Clean up your sleep hygiene
If you’ve ever seen the movie The Machinist, you know the frightening effects that insomnia causes. Even if you’re not at Christian Bale-level lethargy, just one night of poor sleep can leave you irritable and vulnerable to stress, according to Harvard University. What’s a man to do? Keep your bedroom in good condition to drop off: make it a no-phone zone, sleep with the window slightly open as cooler temps are best for sleep, and spend money on a good bed and bed sheets so it’s a pleasure to get in.
3. Stay on track
You might wake up with good intentions: run, green juice, meditation, shower, shave and smash the day. But often by Friday, it becomes hit snooze (again), B&E roll and steal girlfriend’s dry shampoo. Yep, sticking to healthy habits can significantly cut down on stress, but in practice it can be hard to keep on top of it all. That’s where the Samsung Galaxy Watch comes in. It does everything you need a functional (and fashionable) smart watch to do, while the inbuilt Health App* logs your wellness goals and helps you stay on top of your progress. Together, they can track your heart rate, log your calorie intake, provide workout programs, analyse the quality of your sleep even REM cycles, monitor your stress levels and help with guided breathing to combat it. Goodbye, hassles. Hello, health.
4. Sweat it out
Chronic stress has been linked to every undesirable health issue you can think of: high blood pressure, heart disease, asthma and a whole bunch of digestive disorders. The cure lies in regular, heart pumping, muscle burning workouts. Any will do – weights, running, CrossFit, you name it. Not only does breaking a sweat lower the levels of adrenaline and cortisol in your body, but the endorphins released make you feel happy and help you to sleep later on, which in turn crushes your stress. You can’t afford not to.
*Galaxy Watch is not a medical/therapeutic device and fitness and health functions are for informational purposes only. Using Samsung Health app with Galaxy Watch requires signup and pairing with your compatible smartphone.