Ashworth College Blog

9 ways to keep your chill - an infographic

Written by Ashworth College on Monday, 07 May 2018. Posted in Life Hacks

Keep Chill Chart of methods for managing stress

Stress is everywhere. You feel it when you’re managing your finances, during busy times at work, when you’re trying to get your kids to stop fighting and, if you’re a student, you feel it trying to squeeze schoolwork in between everything else you have to do.

We know you're juggling a lot in addition to managing your studies. So, we brainstormed some ways to encourage you.

Unfortunately, our CFO refused to hear the proposal on a school-wide vacay in Hawaii. We got creative and gathered some stress-management tips instead. There's nothing tropical about them, but the benefits may be longer-lasting. You can bookmark this page to review again and again. Plus, we created the Keep Chill Chart that's farther down the page. Download it, print it, and post it up somewhere for quick reference next time the heat is on.

Recognizing stress

Some stress is good. But too much can take a toll on you and your life. The first step to minimizing bad stress is to recognize when you are feeling its effects. These are telltale signs of too much stress:

  • Being easily frustrated or moody
  • Clenched jaw and grinding teeth
  • Difficulty relaxing
  • Feeling a loss of control
  • Frequent colds or sinus infections
  • Headaches
  • Insomnia
  • Low self-esteem
  • Low energy
  • Persistent aches and pains
  • Upset stomach

Handling stress

Squashing stress is astonishingly simple! Keep these tips handy for reference.

  1. Think big picture
    When we’re stressed, we drill down to the nitty-gritty moment of what we’re stressed about. Take a deep breath and a step back. Your life is much more than this one stress-filled moment. Shift your thoughts to the past and future. You were almost certainly hyper-stressed about something three years ago—what was it? Can’t remember, can you? It’s a good reminder that whatever is stressing you now will likely fade away in the not-so-distant future. And speaking of the future, picture yourself 80-years-old and in your rocking chair. Are you going to look back and think, “If only I’d gotten that one report out on time, my whole life would have been different!” Probably not. So relax. This too shall pass.
  2. Focus
    Does it feel like you are carrying the weight of the world on your shoulders? When we’re stressed, all of our concerns tend to combine and intensify. Our thoughts become as jumbled as the tasks before us. Break yourself from worrying about everything all at once and focus on one thing at a time. Even go a step further and take that one thing and break it down into baby steps. “Go over finances” can be a stressful to-do. But “Find checkbook and place on desk,” and “Pull up bank account online,” are small, do-able tasks that move you toward your goal.
  3. Write a worry list
    Stress tends to multiply when we keep it in our head. Making it tangible turns it into something that’s doable. So put everything you are worried about on a single list. Sometimes just the act of writing stress down can help it go away. And this list is for your eyes only, so if you’re worried about something that others may think is “silly,” write it down. It’s real to you and that’s what matters.
  4. Exercise
    Exercise produces endorphins, which makes us happy. Those happy feelings can help keep stress at bay. So, go for a run or a walk, join a cycling class or dance around to loud music for 20 minutes. Drop to the floor and pound out 10 push-ups. Whatever you do, your sweat will slay your stress in no time.
  5. Breathe
    You may have heard about the benefits of meditation for stress. But sometimes it’s hard to find an hour to go to your local yoga studio. That’s ok. You can accomplish some of the same benefits simply by taking 120 seconds to take s-l-o-w deep breaths. And yes, you have 120 seconds to spare.
  6. Call for backup
    We all need a little help from our friends. When you’re stressed, reach out to the people in your life, whether that be your BFF or your BFM (best family member). Maybe you can ask them to lighten the load of your to-do list, or maybe you simply need someone to vent to – either way, you’ll be able to zap your worries. Just make sure the person you call is someone who actually soothes you, versus riles you up.
  7. Take a break
    Creating physical space between you and whatever is stressing you out can help. Take a break! Take a no cell-phone walk outside, get a glass of water or remove yourself from a stressful situation until you calm down.
  8. Clean
    Cleaning and organizing the space around you can help clear your mind. Does your desk have piles of papers on it? File or recycle them! Is the dust piling up in your car? Grab a rag and wipe it down. Feng-shui teaches that even reorganizing a shelf can affect your mental and emotional states, signaling a fresh start. It’s amazing how this small change can impact your whole mindset.
  9. Reflect and reset
    When we’re stressed, it’s natural to focus on what’s going wrong. But sometimes a simple mindset shift to thinking positively can help turn things around. Give some thought to what is going right in your life. Try saying out loud one thing you are thankful for each morning or posting one positive element of your day each day on social media.

Do you want help remembering these tips? Get your own copy! Click the graphic to download your own full-color printable version.

Flexible. Affordable. Accredited.

Call 1-800-957-5412 or enroll online now!

About the Author

Ashworth College

Ashworth College

Our community is full of independent, motivated, growth-focused students. Dive into our blog to explore diverse stories from our students, friends, experts, and executives. From tips & tricks to student experiences and alumni stories, the Ashworth Blog is all about celebrating our community's accomplishments and passions.

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