Personal Development

10 Ways to Combat Stress

Your life is likely full of stressors that you may or may not have control over. Stress can take a toll on your mental as well as your physical health. When you are stressed you might find yourself engaging in stress eating and less likely to eat mindfully. That is why managing your stress is so important.

Managing stress can be difficult, especially when you have a hectic schedule. However, it’s important to keep your stress in check and not let it take control of your life. While this sentiment is easier said than done, there are some techniques that you can use to combat stress.

Here are 10 easy ways to combat stress:

1. Take a Long Walk

Get outside for some fresh air and enjoy a nice long walk. A walk outside can relax you and let you organize your thoughts without being surrounded by life stressors. It’s also a great way to remove yourself from an immediate stressor, even if you just take 15 minutes.

2. Be a Kid

There is an inner child that resides inside each one of us.  Joining in on your children’s fun can be just the thing you need to remind you to let loose and enjoy! If you don’t have kids, then remind yourself of what you loved to do as a child and go do it! Head to the park and have a turn on the monkey bars or slide! You’ll be surprised how your stress will be gone in minutes.

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3. Soak in a Bubble Bath

It may seem cliché, but there is something about taking a bubble bath that can make all your stress melt away.  Use soaps with luxurious scents like vanilla, lavender, and jasmine to enhance the experience. Lower the lights, light a scented candle and close your eyes. And make sure you put the “do not disturb” sign on the door!

4. Have a Laugh

Take a few minutes to look up funny videos online.  Laughter and viewing silly things can take you out of that serious, stressed state, and put you in a lighter mood! Have a list of go-to comedy channels you love on YouTube for quick access.

5. Set Aside Time to Meditate

If you are new to meditation, it may seem unnatural at first. To start, just take 5-10 minutes to sit in a quiet space, closing your eyes, and taking some deep breaths. This can make you feel like a new person.  As you become more comfortable with this, you can engage in more formal meditation. Clearing your mind for a few minutes every day can help you focus and feel refreshed!

6. Phone a Friend

Take a few minutes to call a close friend just to say hello.  Not only will you brighten her day, it will make you happy to talk to someone outside of your realm of stress. She might even help you process whatever is stressing you in that moment.

7. Visualization Vacation

While it is unfortunately impossible to take a physical vacation every day, you can take a mental one.  Whether it’s looking at photos from a recent vacation or viewing pictures online of a place you would like to go, visualize yourself taking a break to help give yourself a daily vacation!

8. Make an “I Did” List

To do lists can be a helpful organizational tool, but when they are pages long, they can overwhelm you and cause you to worry.  Instead, make an “I Did” list and write down all the things you accomplished that day or week.  Noting your accomplishments is an important part of stress management.

You’ll want to read these articles, too:

5 Steps To No More Stress

4 Reasons NOT TO DIET

5 Steps to No MORE Fear 

9. Look in a Book

Find a book that you have been wanting to read and make it a point to read one chapter a night.  Immerse yourself in the story and step into the characters shoes for a while!

10. Mirror, Mirror

Look at yourself in the mirror and list all the good things in your life.  Stress can take us away from the many positives that surround us daily.  Bringing your mind back to those things you are proud of or that bring you joy can make certain stressful elements seem trivial and it can put a new perspective on your day!

While this list is not inclusive, there are many other strategies that you can use to combat stress, without turning to food! The important thing is that you find what feels right for you.

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About the author

Bonnie R. Giller MS, RDN, CDN, CDE

Bonnie R. Giller MS, RDN, CDN, CDE

Bonnie is the owner and founder of She helps chronic dieters and emotional eaters break free of the pain of dieting and get the healthy body they love. She does this by creating a tailored solution that combines three essential ingredients: a healthy mindset, caring support and nutrition education.

Using her signature Freedom to Eat ForeverTM System, Bonnie helps her clients support and honor their mind and body. The result is they make peace with food, enjoy guilt-free eating, a life free of dieting, and get the body they love.

Bonnie is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist, Certified Diabetes Educator and Certified Intuitive Eating Counselor. She has her Master of Science in Clinical Nutrition. She has worked in medical nutrition therapy and counseling for 30 years.

Bonnie is very passionate about helping her clients regain the trust in themselves and their bodies so they can shift away from a diet mentality and learn to listen to their inner hunger and fullness signals. She is known for providing caring support and motivation as her clients reacquaint themselves with their inner wisdom.

To learn more about Bonnie and to get a copy of Bonnie’s free e-book “5 Steps to a Body You Love Without Dieting, visit