Almost everyone in modern society is looking for ways to reduce stress. Stress could be considered a self-manifested disease, and it’s been around forever. We used to call it bad energy. You don’t catch it from the Subway, and you don’t get to stay home from work.
Instead of succumbing to stress, start taking control of the chemical balances inside your body. You can drastically reduce stress by simple changes in habits, mindsets, and routines. A life without stress comes from the proper balance of mind, body, and lifestyle. In order to experience the power of that balance, check out these hardcore micro-habits below you may not have thought to try.
COLD SHOWERS IN THE MORNING
Try three-to-five minute ice cold showers in the morning. Don’t psyche yourself out. It’s the same as swimming in a cold spring or a chilly lake. You get used to it the second you’re in there.
Why do we do this? Instant removal of that early morning fog. Mood-boosting chemicals released by the truckload. In-and-out efficiency, resulting in more free time. And of course, it’s east to forget there are people in the world without water to even DRINK. We dump gallons of unlimited clean hot water down the drain every day. Cut back.
This habit makes you break through a tiny mental barrier every morning by stepping in that ice cold water. The psychology behind that is a powerful way to build willpower. And once you are out, you are awake, alert, and ready to conquer today.
CONTEMPLATE YOUR EXISTENCE REAL QUICK
We’ve all had that one day. Our car died, our dog broke down, our wife got fired and our job divorced us. Or something like that. You know the only cure for days like that? It’s to sit down on the nearest park bench, look up into the sky, and remember that we are a collection of connected living organisms attached to a giant rock flying through space. Our existence as humanity is actually kind of hilarious. Relax, and then get to work fixing your problems.
DO PUSHUPS OR SQUATS TO FAILURE
It takes less than a minute. It doesn’t matter where you are, or what you are doing. In the office, find an empty stair way. At home, get off the couch. At the bus stop, pay no mind to the people giving you weird looks. If you are feeling lethargic, burnt out, or unmotivated, just get down and blow through as many pushups as you possible can in a row. Not 20, 50. Spend a couple months getting to 100.
You know what happens when you stand up? Your blood is pumping. Endorphins are flooding your brain. You feel stronger. You pushed yourself. You’re back on top. Just this simple act during your 2PM crash can completely turn around your entire afternoon. Don’t go fuel up on coffee. Drop and give me 50 instead.
(PS: This is no substitute for a proper fitness routine. For incredible bodyweight routines you can do in 15 minutes a day, check out http://darebee.com/)
THROW SOMETHING AWAY
Make it instinctual to constantly be looking around your environment to find things you don’t need. Stuff. Junk. Trinkets. Toss it. Minimalism is not just making space in your home; it’s making space in your head. Once you’ve finished with this article, read “The Complete Guide to Minimalism.”
You don’t need stuff. You need experiences. Remove your attachments. All day long you are bombarded with marketing messages telling you to buy more, spend more, watch this, eat that, lose weight, gain weight. How exhausting. Reduce stress by rebelling against the system and keep simplifying your life.
BE GRATEFUL, DANGIT
Is being grateful hardcore? Of course it is. Because it’s so difficult for us to do. Before you set foot out the door, you need to announce, out loud, something you are grateful for. You woke up that morning. You can walk, or you have an opportunity to excel. Your family, or music. Then, you need to explain to yourself why you are grateful for that thing.
Gratitude is a paradigm shift. In a world that pushes constant discontentment, it feels pretty great to free yourself from all that for a second. If you have the technology and skills to read this sentence, you are the wealthiest 1% of the world. Don’t ever forget how lucky you are, no matter what.
INTEGRATE THE 15-MINUTE SPARTAN MONK MORNING ROUTINE
The concept of the Spartan Monk: calm, strong, dedicated, kind. This downloadable PDF has 6 habits (a few from above, and a few brand new ones) combined into one insane 15-minute morning routine dedicated to catapulting you into the most peaceful and productive day you’ve ever had, every time. Print off the included calendar to make sure you never miss a day. Download here.
Leave a comment: What are some of the daily habits and routines you use to reduce stress?