Sometimes, stress can actually be good for you. Positive stress, which is often characterised by feelings of excitement and satisfaction, is short-term and can motivate one to focus their energy on the task in front of them. On the other hand, there’s also what’s called negative stress, which is what people refer to when they’re feeling “stressed out.” This type of stress causes people to feel overwhelmed and anxious. It can even trigger headaches, insomnia, irritability, and other unwanted symptoms that may impair a person’s physical capacity to function normally.
Some people are more prone to experiencing extended periods of negative stress, and it’s a must for them to keep their level of distress under control so as not to be constantly fatigued by it. If you’re in the same situation, practising gratitude daily can be an effective way of staying on top of your stress levels, calming your mind and body, dealing with uncertainties, and channelling the restless energy produced by feelings of stress into productive activities. Here’s how you can do that.
Meditate on the Things You Are Thankful for Every Day
Making a habit of meditation is an effective means of reducing unwanted emotions like sadness and anxiety as well as physical symptoms such chronic pain and high blood pressure. Combined with feelings of gratitude, meditation can be used to control stress levels throughout the day. If you’re Muslim, you can practice gratefulness with every prayer, for example. The Muslim Pro app can give you a heads up on the day’s prayer schedules, no matter where you may be on the planet, so you never miss your devotions. Additionally, you can check out the Muslim Pro Facebook page to find uplifting content and help you maintain a positive attitude. By incorporating gratefulness in your meditation or prayer times, it’ll be easier for you to adopt this activity as a habit.
Record Memories That Make You Feel Grateful
When you’re stressed out all the time, it can be difficult to think of the things that make you feel grateful. If you don’t have any record of the things that you’re thankful for, it can be too easy to forget about them and get lost in the feelings of uncertainty and the immense pressure that you feel. One way to make the good things count is by regularly keeping a record of them. In addition to recalling the things you are thankful for every time you pray, you can also write about them in a dedicated journal.
You can set aside a few minutes right before sleeping to recall the events, things, and personalities that made a positive impact on your day. On top of keeping a record of the good things that happened to you or that you made happen, the act of writing down the things you are grateful for will help remind you of your feelings of appreciation for others. This, in turn, will help you set the mood for the rest of your day or dictate your thoughts before going to bed.
Savour Experiences That Inspire Feelings of Appreciation
It’s easy to fall into the trap of focusing on the negative type of stress. Often, a person who has been dealing with chronic negative stress will have a hard time not thinking about their stressors, even when they’re trying to rest or in a situation where they’re supposed to be enjoying themselves. This only increases their stress levels, as they may feel unable to resist the triggers and control their negative stress reactions.
Setting aside the feelings inspired by negative stress, even if just for a short while, is a difficult skill to master. However, it’s also something you can work on little by little. For example, if the food you’re eating tastes good, you can focus on the joy that you feel from this activity instead of the deadline that you might need to meet after lunch hour. If anxious thoughts follow you even as you do your skincare routine, how about focusing on the things that you can sense at the moment, such as the scent of the products that you are using and how they feel against your skin? Diverting your attention to these details can help you feel more grounded and give you some respite, even if just a little bit, from stressful thoughts and situations.
Commiting to practice gratitude can help you deal with negative emotions, including excessive stress. It’s an effective way to not only reduce the impact of stress on your thoughts and feelings but also to build emotional resilience and reduce your chances of suffering from stress-related health issues. Slowly build a habit of observing and practising gratitude, and you’ll be able to enjoy these benefits.