If you want to truly enjoy a long and happy life, it is essential that you keep a close eye on your stress levels. Failing to do so could have a detrimental effect on your wellbeing. That is why you should evaluate every aspect of your life and identify areas where there is room for you to improve. If you are wondering where to start, below are seven steps that will help you on your way.

Spend more of your time outside

The first step is to spend more of your time in the open air. Doing so is the perfect opportunity for you to escape the demands of daily life and significantly reduce your stress levels. If your garden is not yet a place where you like to spend your time, now is your chance to make a change. Why not get to work clearing your outside space and laying new turf? You could then splash out on a fancy decking area, some raised borders, or even an ornamental pond. If you decide to push forward with this project, you should get in touch with Skip the Tip as they will make it easier for you to clear your waste, and get to work transforming the area. In addition to this, you should pay regular visits to your local beauty spots and go on plenty of hikes, walks, runs, and cycle routes.

Take up exercise and follow a healthy diet

Not only is hiking, walking, running, and cycling a great chance for you to spend time outside, it is also a brilliant way for you to improve your fitness levels. When you exercise, you benefit from a rush of endorphins. This mood-boosting chemical is an instant way for you to enjoy a positive frame of mind. Exercise activities such as kickboxing, judo, and self-defense are also a good choice if you have lots of pent up aggression that you would like to work through. In order to thrive under your new exercise regime, you will also need to evaluate your diet. If you are going to power through, it is important that you eat balanced meals and lots of nutritional snacks as they will give you the energy you need to make it through your hectic schedule. Why feel tired and irritable, when you can make a change for the better?

Establish a strong work-life balance

You can also make a positive change by establishing a strong work-life balance. You can do this by learning how to say no and forcing yourself to delegate certain tasks. This will free up your time and give you more of a chance to unwind in the evenings and at the weekend. Even if you understand the importance of taking time off, you might find it tempting to pick up late night emails and work calls. Instead of allowing this to happen, you need to switch off your technology at a certain point of the night. Ideally, you should have at least two hours to yourself. Perhaps you could indulge in a relaxing bubble bath or treat yourself to a delicious home-cooked meal.

Arrange regular meetups with your friends and family

Another brilliant use for your free time is to arrange regular meetups with your friends and family. Interacting with people you love is essential if you are going to enjoy a well-rounded lifestyle. If your loved ones are fairly relaxed, you might not feel a lot of pressure to spend time with them. However, this is no excuse for letting things slide. Failing to make an effort could lead you to look back with regret. That is why you should organize at least one social gathering a week. You could catch a movie with your friend, take your elderly parents shopping, or Skype call a loved one who lives abroad. Alternatively, if you are tight on time, you could multi-task and meet up with your loved ones to exercise, carry out chores, or mind your children. Whatever you decide, the most important thing is that you have plenty of people to lean on when times get tough. If you are going to avoid extreme levels of stress, you need to talk through your issues rather than allowing them to bubble away under the surface.

Plan regular vacations

If you are particularly close to a loved one, you could even work together to organize a vacation. A vacation is the perfect opportunity for you to temporarily step away from your problems and gain a new perspective on life. If you are completely wound up, why not pay a visit to a spa hotel or a yoga retreat? Just make sure that you avoid holiday destinations that will exacerbate your feelings of anxiety. For instance, if you are a school teacher who is overwhelmed by work, you should look for accommodation that is specifically for adults. Or, if you are worn out by city life, you should keep your eyes peeled for a country getaway that provides you with a change of pace.

Clean up your living space

Once you have returned home, after your vacation, you should endeavor to clean up your living space. For you to enjoy a happy and healthy life, it is vital that chaos and clutter don’t surround you. That is why you should go through your home removing items that you don’t realistically need. You should also invest in storage solutions that will allow you to keep all of your surfaces clear. Then, you should create a cleaning rota that will force you to keep your standards high. Or, if funds allow, you could employ the services of a professional housekeeper.

Swap unhealthy habits for healthy lifestyle choices

Finally, you should make an effort to swap unhealthy habits for healthy life choices. This is an important step if you are going to feel more positive about the years ahead. Whether you struggle with smoking, drinking, gambling, technology, or impulse purchases, it is vital that you take control. Not only will this help to free up your finances, but it will also allow you to focus your attention on a better way of life. You can start to make positive choices that bring you light, love, and laughter.

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