How to Stop Sweating the Small Stuff

How to Stop Sweating the Small Stuff

Salvatore Moccia, writer

The Big Question

     “Don’t sweat the small stuff”, a common piece of advice given to those who are stressed but this is easier said than done. What exactly goes into not sweating the small stuff? The answer is, a lot. It takes work and active effort to avoid letting small things bug you, but with these tactics to not give in to petty problems you’ll basically be a zen master. These easy methods to help keep calm can be done practically anywhere at any time to help you manage your stress.

Just Breathe

     This is arguably the most important tactic that can be used in situations where you feel overwhelmed by issues that come up in daily life. Just breathe. A deep breath can be used as an anchor to pull you back to the moment and clear your head. If you begin to start to think about something that is causing you anxiety, focus on your breath again. The idea of this exercise is just to allow those thoughts to pass without issue using your breath as a tether to pull you back if anxiety starts to arise. Just remember, focus on the feeling of your chest rising and falling with your breath or the feeling of air filling your lungs to acknowledge those negative thoughts and let them pass.

Jump Around

     Another strategy that many people have found effective is exercising. Regular exercise not only has a positive effect on your physical health but your mental health as well. Moving around causes an increase in endorphins, which lowers stress levels. Exercise also contributes to other factors that have to do with stress. Getting moving can enhance your mood and improve your sleep which both can cause you to be more easily stressed. 

I’m Thankful For…

     The third method that can be used to avoid sweating the small stuff is to think of things that you are grateful for. Practicing gratitude regularly helps to train your mind to look at the bigger picture instead of getting stuck on small issues. Thinking about things in your life that you are happy to have makes tiny inconveniences seem easier to deal with. Gratitude can be difficult for some because it’s not a concept that most people actively pay attention to in their daily lives, if you are like this then here’s a simple exercise you can do with gratitude. Take any piece of paper you can find and write down something you are grateful for. It could be something large like your family or something tiny like how sharp your pencil is. Practicing gratitude will make shrugging off small issues a breeze.

     Hopefully, you can make use of these strategies to make your life a little more stress-free. These are just some of the hundreds of ways to avoid stressing out over small things and it’s important to realize that what works for others may not work for you and it’s just a matter of you listening to yourself to determine the best method for you.