At some point in our lives, we will experience some kind of stress. Whether it’s stress from not getting a good night’s sleep to the stress of juggling 15 different things at work, there’s no escape from stress. If stress is left unchecked, it can wreak havoc on our health and productivity. In fact, stress has been associated with physical problems like a weakened immune system, stomachaches, high blood pressure, hair loss, and headaches. So what can you do to combat stress? Here are 5 MORE ways to eliminate your stress (on top of the 6 techniques we’ve outlined in a previous post):


1. Socialize – Loneliness can be deadly, which is why the elderly is more likely to get depression than other generations. Get in touch with old friends or volunteer at a local non-profit to connect with other people, share a laugh or two, and feel your stress melt away with each smile.


2. Switch to decaf – Caffeine can be a natural anxiety booster. It gets the energy and emotions flowing and can really increase stress. Most people need a little caffeine to get them going in the morning, but after lunch the caffeine isn’t usually necessary. Consider switching your afternoon coffee to decaf. That way, you aren’t adding caffeine to potentially stressful situations, which is like adding gasoline to a fire.


3. Take a breather – Can you think of anything more rejuvenating than a little rest and relaxation? Don’t be afraid to take a break every once in a while!


4. Unplug – sometimes we just need a digital detox. The never-ending deluge of notifications from our computer and mobile devices can be exhausting to go through. So consider “unplugging” afternoon or evening each week. Take off your phone, sign out of your email, and logoff of messaging platforms. Allow yourself a quiet time of day to tackle your life with no distractions.


5. Don’t skip meals or eat unhealthy– If we’re overloaded with several tasks to check off, we might end up being too busy to eat something. Skipping meals is never okay, and eating junk food full of grease and sugar doesn’t help either. Eating healthier snacks like veggies gives you a much better energy boost than chips or donuts.


Stress is a challenge everyone faces every day, but it doesn’t have to control you. Take control of your stress and tackle it head on with these techniques. Your body will thank you later.