Even simple living can be full of stressful situations. Here are a few tips on How to Live a Less Stressful Life to help you manage stress.
Managing Stress in a Simple Life
Read that title again. Does it make sense? How can one be living a simple life and still have so much stress? I’ll tell you how.
If you are following our story you know that our life is anything but stress-free right now. Between moving, mortgages, and more, we are pretty much stress maxed out at this point.
But if we are really living a simple life then how can we be so stressed out? I’m sure you know the answer to this one….
Unexpected things. Things you don’t plan for. Things that throw your world for a loop and then a backflip. They happen in all lifestyles, even a simple one.
Fortunately, there are some great ways to help with managing stress in a simple life and I’m going to share them with you today. Make sure you add your own stress-relieving tips in the comments below as well.
Go take a walk.
Sometimes you need a cool breeze and some fresh air to clear your mind and to put things in perspective again. Take a walk down the road, around your yard, in a park, or in any fairly quiet place. Stop every so often and take a deep breath. Research shows that fresh air helps our brain feel an improved sense of well being. Take a deep long breath in your nose and count to ten, then exhale through your mouth. Do this a few times to help your mind and body get to a more relaxed state.
Clear out the clutter.
One thing that I tend to do when I’m in a state of panic or stress is to forget to clean. But clutter around our homes can increase a sense of urgency and stress and therefore only adds to our levels of distress. Instead of going into the commander of cleaning mode (like I can do sometimes!), just start by picking things up and putting them where they belong. Then grab a rag and wash the floor or the dishes. Doing so will give you a chance to cool down, think about something else, and help remove the clutter.
–Looking for ways to declutter? Listen to the The Little House Living Show – How to Start Decluttering.
Discover what is really bothering you.
Once you’ve done the first two steps, it’s time to sit down and find out what is really bothering you. Are you really mad at the dog or are you mad at the neighbor that confronted you when your dog was in his yard? When I found out that we weren’t going to be able to travel and we didn’t know what we were going to do, I thought I was mad that our plans went up in smoke and I couldn’t enjoy the lifestyle we had dreamed about. But truth be told, when we sat down and talked about it, my real stress was that I didn’t know where that left us or where we would go and that thought scared me.
Ignore the ignorant.
I get upset when someone tells me “Well it could be worse.” for a couple of different reasons. 1. I feel like that means they think my situation isn’t so bad. 2. I feel like they don’t care so are brushing you off with a quick comment. 3. I actually start to think of all the things that could be worse and could happen, which induces more stress. Luckily I’m a glass is half full person and I dismiss those comments by doing these things.
- I remind myself that they are not in my shoes and truly do not understand what I’m going through.
- I remind myself that they probably don’t know what to say.
- I refuse to think of what could be worse and try and think of the perks of the situation. Sometimes that can be the hardest thing to do but to every storm cloud, there is a rainbow.
Remind yourself how blessed you are.
Now I’m not saying that we should ignore what we are going through completely. I believe that facing trials and tribulations in our lives is what makes us stronger for each new situation that we come up against. But it’s good to stop and think about the ways you ARE blessed every so once in a while. Here’s my little example…when we first figured out we would move into the farmhouse I spent a day being upset that we sold all our furniture and wouldn’t have the money to buy things to fill our home for quite a while. The next day I remembered that old card table that I had received when my grandma passed away. It only has 3 chairs but there are just 3 of us! And even though it’s not pretty I know I have some pretty table linens I kept in a box that we can cover it with. Topped with a nice candle and we have a dining room table! I even was a little excited by the fact that I could use some of my scrap fabric to sew new tablecloths and change it up as needed. I did that with every piece of furniture I was “missing” until I had convinced myself that this is going to be a great adventure. It’s all about perspective.
I’m not a therapist or a doctor or anything of the sort. But I am a county girl that’s trying to live a simple lifestyle and these tips are what works for me to help manage stress in a simple life. I hope that they might help you with whatever you are facing today and give you encouragement for a better tomorrow.
Here are a few more posts you might enjoy:
- Living a More Simple Life
- Time Management in a Simple DIY Lifestyle
- Ways to Enjoy a Simpler Lifestyle
- 14 Steps Towards Living a Simpler Lifestyle
- The Homemaker’s Creed- The Simplest Weekly Planner
If you are looking to simplify your life even further, you may want to check my eWorkbook, 31 Days to Simpler Living! In it, you will find 79 pages of daily challenges, info and advice, and printable worksheets and checklists to keep you on track along your journey.
What are some stress tips you have or that work for you? How do you handle managing stress in a simple life?
This post on How to Live a Less Stressful Life was originally published on Little House Living in January 2014. It has been updated as of January 2020.