Day to day life can be stressful for most people. With high-risk jobs, or too much responsibility can definitely lead you to develop unhealthy coping mechanisms. What makes an unhealthy coping mechanism is that it doesn’t benefit you long term, it takes a toll on your health and overall, stunts your personal growth. While it’s important to indulge from time to time, you should always keep in mind that what you do in your free time to feel good doesn’t have to be bad for you.
One of the best things you can do for yourself early on in your life is to develop a more balanced approach to self coping and to try and heal from the stress of everyday life with activities that won’t damage your health, mental and physical and will actually benefit you while doing their job of making you feel better.
What is so tempting about these unhealthy coping systems is that there very easy to do and very easy to get into the habit of doing it; otherwise why would people still do it? So here, we’ve listed 5 things you can do to change your life better and develop coping techniques that are sustainable and beneficial.
Distinguish between indulgence and self-care
The basics of coping mechanisms for depression are caring for yourself; which is one of the best ways to make sure you’re able to handle whatever stressful situation you end up being in. The word self-care is being thrown around a lot these days, and some people are greatly undermining its importance and the clear difference between that and indulging. But the way to do that is not to turn to alcohol or drugs as the main way to deal with stress. That would be an indulgence.
Caring for yourself means caring for your physical and mental well being through productive activities. So next time you feel like you need a break to think about what would actually benefit you and make you feel better in the long term instead of entering the same old cycle of easy but harmful activities.
Develop the habit of investing
From the types of coping mechanisms psychology offers, one is removing the stress factors from your life. One of the biggest sources of anxiety is financial instability, so consider prioritizing your financial health as well.
You can start by looking into different long term financial strategies that won’t require much of your time. Starting from investing, or putting some money aside every month, developing this habit will serve you well for the rest of your life and will make you feel more in control of your life. You could consider cryptocurrencies as your starting point since they’re decentralized and accessible.
Cryptocurrencies are becoming a worldwide phenomenon, cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin are used for online casinos in Canada, while China is launching its government cryptocurrency. So if you decide to get better acquainted with the finance world cryptocurrencies could be your entry.
Bite the bullet and start exceeding
The best coping mechanism for anxiety is actually exercising. I know what you’re thinking. You probably hear this one all the time. But that is because it actually works. Exercise makes you feel happier, more in control, and of course, it is essential for your overall health. Studies from Yale and Oxford show that exercise actually makes you happier than money. When people say that they hate exercising, it just means that they haven’t found the activity that they enjoy doing.
A contemporary approach to exercising has shaped to mean spending hours at the gym doing the same 3 moves repeatedly. It doesn’t have to be like that. Actually, the more variety you bring to your exercise routine, the more you will enjoy it. Exercise can also happen outside the gym. Maybe instead of taking the bus to work, you walk part of the road. Maybe you enjoy hiking in scenic places, or maybe you love climbing.
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There are multiple ways to incorporate some physical activity into your day to day life. Doing as little as 30 minutes of activity a day can drastically change the quality of your life.
Reconsider your eating habits
What so many people underestimate, is the impact that our daily nutrients have on our mental health. One of the best coping skills for adults is paying attention to healthy eating habits and cultivating them. Those foods might taste good, but they make you feel pretty out of it after. This somewhat falls in the same category as distinguishing between indulgence and self-care.
Of course, restricting yourself from something completely just makes you want it, even more, so don’t be too harsh on your dietary limits, but when you’re in a bad mood or too tired instead of doing the usual fast-food joint try cooking a meal or ordering something that’s good for you. Not only will you feel better after the meal, but you will also have the knowledge that you did something good for yourself, which always brings up your spirits. Eating is a wide-spread coping mechanism. Why not try and turn it into something positive?
Remember to allow room for mistakes
Often times, we turn to these unhealthy habits because we put too much pressure on ourselves to always be on top of our game. The pressure itself can be enough to steer you in the direction of these unhealthy coping mechanisms because we simply don’t feel like we can do better. The fact that we’re taking time to think about how to develop coping skills is a good sign already.
On the contrary, when you’re more forgiving towards yourself, you feel less inclined to go to extremes to forget about your job, or whatever stress factor is bothering you at the moment. A balanced approach means that you evaluate the situation from a neutral standpoint and don’t overreact over every single mistake. That way, you will feel less of a need to indulge and forget about yourself completely. Meanwhile, you will be able to better assess what would be the best thing for you right now and can act accordingly.