Feeling constantly bogged down by work and stretched too thin financially? Join the club! Just about everyone these days is stressed it seems and unfortunately there’s no easy answer to removing these ongoing stressors.

Fortunately though, what you can do is to use natural remedies for stress in order to feel better. Stress is the result of neurochemical releases which in turn are the result of what we think and what we focus on. The way you react to your situation is what can make you feel more or less stressed and this in turn means that your mental state is more important actually than the scenario.

And if you want to counteract the negative effects of that stress, then all you have to do is to distract yourself so you are thinking about something happy instead. That means listening to up-beat music, watching a funny film, playing a computer game, spending time with friends or even doing some math!

Alternatively you can use natural remedies for stress that focus less on preventing the stress hormones and more on triggering happiness hormones which work to counteract the effects of stress. Many different activities are well known to help boost serotonin – such as socializing (again), exercising, getting fresh air and even just smiling.

So really getting rid of stress is actually quite easy…

The Problem

What’s more, most of us know all these natural remedies for stress. We know that if we just stop thinking about stress and instead listen to some happy music, or if we just go out with our friends for the night, then in no time we will feel better.

So why then are so many people still stressed when these natural remedies for stress are all so readily available?

The problem is that stress clouds your judgment. Stress begets stress, it demands attention and it grows as is its very nature.

When you’re stressed, as mentioned you probably already know that the best thing you can do is to go outside for a run or just to put on some happy music and have a dance.

The issue is that very few of us will. Instead we’ll go and sulk, hit a wall, stare out the window or even put on sad or angry music!

The issue is that in that moment when we’re very stressed, we actually don’t want to be happy. Instead we want to wallow. That’s the nature of stress and it’s why it’s so perpetuating. Likewise, when you’re very stressed you will probably struggle to sleep (which is another one of the best natural stress remedies) and you’ll find it hard to focus on anything else – even reading a good book. Your mind will just keep taking you back to those things that make you stressed.

Stress is like a parasite – it demands attention and it does anything it can to survive and grow. Stress is even infectious meaning that if one person is stressed it’s very likely that everyone they work with/spend time with will also be stressed by the end of the day.

How to Effectively Use Natural Stress Remedies

The question then is, how do you overcome these challenges and get your natural stress remedies to work all the same? How do you overcome your urge to wallow and bask in stress so that you can start to feel better instead?

One solution is to have friends who understand this situation and who won’t leave you alone.

If you’ve ever been feeling depressed or very stressed and your friend just won’t go away and keeps bugging you to go out with them, then you’ll know that this can be incredibly annoying and frustrating. What you’ll also probably know though is that as a result you ended up feeling much better than you could possibly have done on your own and you end up very grateful to them.

Make sure that you do the same for your friends and make a pact – you will not allow one another to sulk. Get them to force you to spend time with them when you’re stressed and you’ll find that it ebbs much more quickly.

The other way to use natural stress remedies when you don’t want to is to sneak them in. This is similar to the way that salesmen will use the ‘foot in the door’ technique. Instead of forcing yourself to do something that seems completely unappealing at that time – like going running – instead do something that’s just a little more ‘exercisey’ (totally a word…), like going for a walk.

Another effective strategy is to make yourself a playlist of music. Get it to start with that sad and miserable track that you know you’ll want to be listening to when you’re stressed but then have the tone and the tempo of the music gradually improve and get more and more upbeat. This way you can hack your natural stress and trick yourself into embracing natural stress remedies.

Finally, if stress is an ongoing and serious problem for you, consider using CBT. Cognitive behavioral therapy teaches us to be disciplined with our own thoughts and this way you can get yourself to do things that are good for you even when you don’t necessarily feel like it.