3 Ways to De-Stress, Unplug, and Increase Self-Esteem

This week’s blog posts are based on frequent questions asked by our Everly Ambassadors.  Want to become an Everly Ambassador?  Apply today.  

Today, being a teenager is more stressful than ever.  Between homework, extracurricular activities, sleep, friends, family, and social media, it can start to feel like there is just no time to relax.

Does this sound like you?  Ask yourself the following questions:

  • Do you feel overworked, overstressed, and overwhelmed?
  • Do you struggle to get enough sleep to function?
  • Do you feel like you have no time to unwind and exercise?
  • Do you stress over whether you are good enough or how many followers you have?
  • Do you want to be more positive in your life?
  • Do you feel like your responsibilities are getting in the way of your passions?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, this article is for you.

Inspired by the real-life concerns of our teen and tween ambassadors, Everly Mag has put together a list of 3 strategies to de-stress, unplug, and increase self-esteem.

1. Exercise

When you’re overwhelmed, your first instinct is likely to want to lie down, rest, and watch Netflix.  However, going against this instinct and choosing to break a sweat has lasting benefits for self-esteem, relaxation, and happiness.

Image: ClipArtBarn

According to the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, “people who exercise for 30 to 60 minutes, 3-5 days a week get mental health benefits.”

This finding can apply to any type of exercise, whether it’s a quick jog, an hour in dance class, playing soccer, or just taking a stroll with a friend.

Exercise has the most powerful effect on us when we’re in a bad mood, so don’t use your stress as an excuse.   A brief half-hour of physical activity can increase endorphins, reduce stress hormone levels, and help remedy depression and anxiety symptoms (Happify).

Aren’t big into running, sports, or weight-lifting?  Try yoga.  Yoga is a “mind and body practice” that can help reduce blood pressure, improve function for people with chronic back pain, and alleviate anxiety symptoms (NCCIH).

You can head to a yoga class in your area or try an online video tutorial to get started.

Image: Love Happiness Yoga

Next time you think you’d rather spend that extra hour scrolling through Instagram, consider putting on a pair of sneakers or grabbing a yoga mat and boosting your brain – and happiness –  instead.

2. Meditate

After telling you to head out on a run, it may seem hypocritical to tell you to sit still.  However, sometimes you’ve already exercised, or you can’t find the time or space to get in a workout.

Try meditating!  Meditation is another strategy to help live in the present, reduce stress, and become kinder to yourself and others.

Mindfulness Infographic.  Image: Shamash Alidina

When you practice meditation, you are becoming more mindful – aware of yourself, your emotions and sensations, and your surroundings.

Once you acknowledge thoughts and feelings, you’re able to deal – forgive, ignore, heal – instead of distract.  Practicing meditation can help relieve symptoms of pain, stress, anxiety, and insomnia, and guide you toward a healthier and more compassionate lifestyle (HuffPo).

Not ready to step right into meditation?  Try a meditation app like Headspace or Simple Habit.

3. Laugh

Nothing beats the feeling of happiness and calm that comes from a good laugh.  Whether it’s with friends and family, or by yourself, laughter helps reduce stress, release endorphins, and improve cardiac health (GAIAM).

Image: Pinterest

Spending your nights overwhelmed by homework and responsibilities?  Take a few minutes, or even an hour or two, to try these ways to increase laughter in your life:

  • Watch a funny YouTube video.
  • Listen to your favorite comedian.
  • Rediscover an old episode of your favorite comedy series.
  • Look up the funniest movies on Netflix and pick one to start watching.  You can watch a little part of it every day!
  • Call a friend who never fails to make you laugh.
  • Look through old screenshots or photos that make you laugh.
  • Follow a comedy Twitter account.
  • Play with a pet, younger sibling, or other kids you know.

These relaxation activities will actually help you when you return to your work, by lowering your stress and producing a sense of positivity and well-being.  Laughter truly is the best medicine.

Do you have a favorite way to destress and relax?  What’s your top suggestion out of these three?  Let us know in the comments!

This article was written by Everly Mag.  Please do not steal, copy, or reproduce in any way.

Love Everly’s lifestyle content?  Keep reading more on the blog today.

Feature Image Credit: Happify


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