It seems that everyone’s more stressed with ever less time for traditional stress busters like a two-hour lunch, let alone a weekend getaway, and certainly not the two-week beach basks common in generations past.  

Might any of these on-the-fly destressers help you?

  • Have a song rolling in your head. "It's a Small World After All' works well for me.
  • As you get each tiny part of a task done, say to yourself, “Okay."
  • Rock in a chair, even if you have to be working.
  • Think, “Baby steps. What’s the next baby step?”
  • Take three deep breaths, maybe staring at something beautiful, like a flower. Take twice as long to exhale as to inhale.
  • Think of your most peaceful image: a baby sleeping, a fern-lined creek, clouds floating.
  • Take a three-minute walk or drive, perhaps while listening to Pachelbel Canon or to your favorite pump-it-up music.
  • Call someone you love, just to say you love them.
  • Get on the floor with your dog.
  • Have a ritual—for example, a waking or bedtime ritual.
  • Realize that, with 7.7 billion people on the planet and that this day is a mere blink of history’s eye, it doesn’t matter that much.

There are no magic pills but at least these have no side effects.

Marty Nemko was named “The Bay Area’s Best Career Coach” by the San Francisco Bay Guardian and he enjoys a 96 percent client-satisfaction rate. In addition to his articles here on PsychologyToday.com, many more of Marty Nemko's writings are archived on www.martynemko.com. Of Nemko's seven books, the most relevant to readers of this blog is How to Do Life: What They Didn’t Teach You in School. His bio is on Wikipedia.

Recent Posts in How To Do Life

Contrarian Advice on Succeeding in Your Career

For those with doubts about the effectiveness of conventional career advice.

Getting Off to a Good Start on Your New Job

How to make the most of those first days on the job.

A Contrarian Approach to Negotiation

A kinder, gentler, often wiser approach to negotiating your compensation

The Effective, Ethical, and Less Stressful Job Interview

Sitting there passively and giving canned answers is a formula for failure.

Using Recruiters (Headhunters) Wisely

Why recruiters can be key to some job searches—and how best to use them.

Ethical (and Effective) Letters for Job Seekers

A letter helps you only if it's more human and honest than the standard.