Six short but achievable ways to de-stress, leaving you with more time and energy for the things you want to do.
1. Adapt a new attitude.
Realise you can't do it all. There may be things you'll miss out on, and that's OK. The improvement in the quality of your life will more than make up for anything you may miss out on.
2. Trim the fat. Is your desktop a disaster area? Clutter postpones decision making. To eliminate paper pile-ups, use the FAT system: File, Act On, and Toss. For every piece of paper that comes onto your desk (and believe me there's still a lot of paper going around, even with computers!), file those you may need now or in the future. Leave those that require a response on your desk for prompt attention, and throw everything else into the waste paper bin.
Give away or donate to charity anything you haven't worn in the past year. Then select a limited colour scheme and build your wardrobe around it. Whenever you buy anything, it should co-ordinate with everything you already own. Choose machine and hand-washable garments over expensive, dry-clean-only garments.
4. Eliminate dead-end relationships Just because someone was once important to you doesn't mean the relationship is permanent. Free yourself from relationships you've outgrown. You'll have more time for those in need, or who add something to your life right now. While some out-grown relationships will be family members, keep an open mind in case they want to be a meaningful part of your life again. Don't slam shut the door on the possibility that things will change for the better.
5. Turn off the television and cut down your time reading the newspaper. At first glance, this may appear too hard. Be strong. Television is both a drain on time and a noisy distraction. If you usually turn it on immediately after you get home, try leaving it off for at least one evening a week. You'll be amazed at what you can accomplish by not spending so much time in front of the television, watching things that you really have no interest in, and which only make you tired and frustrated.
Newspapers, whether online or hard copy, also demand to be read each day. Scan the headlines and choose to read only those items of direct interest to you.
6. Take time for yourself
Make a point to schedule timeout every day. Get up early and write in a journal. Take a quiet bath before bed. You'll be surprised at what a difference small things like this will make to your day. Remember, it's those quiet times that give us that feeling of fullness in our lives.
Of course, not all of these techniques will apply to your life. The first step toward de-stressing is to think about what complicates it. So choose one or more of the above, and apply as appropriate. You'll be a happier person for it.