There's a reason this list has gone viral.
Back to school equals back to stress for many parents (and kids). I know my anxiety has been ramped up tenfold since the school bus pulled up at our stop for the first time last week. To de-stress, I've been doing yoga, and crying. Softly.
In all seriousness, I strongly believe in finding ways to manage stress so you don't start taking it out on others. That's why I love the list of 101 Ways to Cope With Stress that Twitter user @lovelyyy_lina recently posted. The list reportedly originates from her psychology teacher. So it's got to be legit!
Consider too that the list—which offers suggestions that anyone, at any age, can integrate into their lives from morning to night—has bee retweeted more than 21,000 times, and liked more than 26,000 times at the time of writing.
There are so many good tips, but one of my favorite suggestions from the list, and the one I consider to be life-changing, is to get up 15 minutes earlier. I actually rise a full hour before my kids so I can have time to myself to exercise, shower, or just have a cup of coffee before the chaos begins. I also love the tip that encourages us to say "no" more often. I gotta work on that one.
Avoiding negative people is also key. That tip goes hand-in-hand with not saying (or thinking!) negative things about yourself. This is another area I could use some help with. I'm prone to putting myself down, which is totally unhealthy.
Here's a funny tip from the list: Don't wear tight-fitting clothing. I guess it is stressful when you feel like your pants are cutting off your circulation. Donning comfy clothes will also aid with another tip: Breath deeply and slowly, something I try to do when I feel the stress starting to really take over. I also encourage my kids to take deep breaths when they are feeling anxious.
Some suggestions, meanwhile, are just fun, like "learn a new doodle." Others are pretty huge, like to recognize the importance of unconditional love.
Of course, it would be impossible to incorporate all of these tips at once, but what I love is that there are so many options, you could literally try a new one each day. And that notion plays into the bonus tip to take one day at a time. I would even argue sometimes you have to take one hour, and even one minute at a time. This is what I try to do when things feel overwhelming.
But there are definitely tips that I have not tried, such as to put an air freshener in my car, and throw a paper airplane. I totally believe it's the little things that can make a difference, so don't be surprised if you see me feeding birds, or planting a tree in the near future!
What tip do you practice from this list, and which one would you like to try?
Melissa Willets is a writer/blogger and a mom. Follow her on Twitter (@Spitupnsuburbs), where she chronicles her love of exercising and drinking coffee, but never simultaneously.