7 Effective Habits to Reduce Stress and Find Inner Peace

Hiking in nature.
Nature has a calming effect on our minds and bodies. Research has shown that walking in nature can reduce anxiety and distress while improving cognitive abilities. (Image: Dušan Zidar via Dreamstime)

Modern people face all kinds of pressures. There are many ways to reduce stress, but not all universally apply to different types of people. Many people find relief by satisfying material desires, but they can’t find true happiness. However, some people manage to be at ease and joyful under high pressure. People who are resilient to stress have common traits that allow them to always be in the best state to face challenges.

7 habits to reduce stress

1. Being close to nature

Nature has a calming effect on your mind and body. Research has shown that walking in nature can reduce anxiety and distress while improving cognitive abilities. Embracing nature doesn’t necessarily mean visiting remote landscapes — a walk or a stretch in a small park near your home can refresh your spirit. Taking a few moments to appreciate nature’s beauty can help reduce stress and give your mind a break.

2. Nurturing close friendships

Having a solid support system is essential for managing stress. Maintaining good interpersonal relationships can lead to increased happiness and better health. It is ideal for cultivating a group of close friends. Close friendships require long-term nurturing, so making plans to hang out, chat, have meals together, or even exchange warm greetings over the phone is beneficial. Having a group of friends to rely on can help to reduce stress and provide a sense of security.

Reduce stress through nurturing close relationships.
Maintaining good interpersonal relationships can lead to increased happiness and better health. It is ideal for cultivating a group of close friends. (Image: Monkey Business Images via Dreamstime)

3. Developing positive emotions

It can be challenging to stay positive when faced with adversity, but it is essential for managing stress. Training yourself to think positively can bring about positive emotions and allow you to face adversity optimistically. The book Authentic Happiness mentions that the environment and personal circumstances don’t significantly affect your happiness. Conversely, you can take control of your happiness by learning to adjust your thoughts, beliefs, attitudes, and behavioral patterns and cultivating positive emotions.

4. Giving generous praise and gratitude

Gratitude is a powerful tool for managing stress. Psychologist and best-selling author Shawn Achor believes that the fastest way to train yourself to think positively and optimistically is to continue to praise others and say thank you for 21 days. Spending two minutes a day complimenting different people and expressing gratitude is recommended. Taking the time to recognize the good in others can help to reduce stress and bring joy to both the giver and the receiver.

5. Embracing a kind heart

Kindness is a powerful tool for managing stress. Deal with people and handle things with kindness in mind, and kindness leads to good deeds. Genuinely caring for and helping others benefits the recipients and brings happiness to yourself, making your disposition gentler. Kindness enhances enjoyment and can inspire others to be kind, creating a virtuous cycle.

An older and younger women on a couch.
Genuinely caring for and helping others benefits the recipients and brings happiness to yourself, making your disposition gentler. (Image: Katarzyna Bialasiewicz via Dreamstime)

6. Maintaining inner peace

Inner peace is essential for managing stress. People who have inner peace are not easily worried. They can permanently settle down to pursue their dreams and achieve their goals. Meditation helps to calm the mind. British Indian travel writer Pico Iyer says meditation brings people closer to a magical, serene, and stable inner world. This will help you “recall the true source of happiness, and sometimes it can turn your life around.” Taking the time to practice mindfulness and meditation can help to reduce stress and bring clarity to your thoughts.

7. Actively cultivating patience

Patience is a vital tool for managing stress. When things go out of control, maintaining patience helps people relax and allows them to reconsider from a broader perspective. For example, when driving and stuck in heavy traffic, if someone suddenly cuts in front of you, take a deep breath and practice patience. Perhaps they have an urgent matter to handle. Practicing patience can help to reduce stress and give you the space to make better decisions.

Conclusion

Overall, many habits can help to reduce stress and give your mind a break. Taking the time to nurture close friendships, develop positive emotions, give generous praise and gratitude, embrace a kind heart, maintain inner peace, and actively cultivate patience can help to reduce stress and bring joy to your life.

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