Stress Awareness Day: Charlotte shares her 5 top tips to better manage stress

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We all experience stress. In evolutionary terms, stress is an essential ‘flight or flight’ survival response to ‘threats’ like sabre-toothed tigers coming to attack us. But in 2023, those ‘threats’ appear more in the form of pressures like increasing workloads, tight deadlines or difficult conversations with friends, family members or colleagues.

Stress often gets a bad rep but, managed well, it can actually be a helpful experience, motivating us to meet a deadline or perform well in a job interview, presentation or sports event.

However, stress can become a problem when it builds up over time, sometimes known as ‘chronic stress’ and potentially leading to ‘burnout’. For Stress Awareness Day, 1st November 2023, we are taking the chance to highlight some simple ways that you can better manage stress in your everyday life.

We spoke to our Workplace Wellbeing Lead, Charlotte Crowe, who shared her five top stress-busting tips:

“Trying these ideas won’t make all the stress in your life disappear. But they could make it easier to get through stressful situations” – Charlotte

1) Be kind to yourself.

Learning to be kinder to yourself can help with how you feel in different situations.

Let’s say you went for a job interview and have just found out that you did not get the job. You might put yourself down and think about all the things that you could have said. This ‘shoulda, woulda, coulda’ thinking will only add to your stress. Instead, try to have compassion for yourself as you would for anybody you care about.

Remember, we all make mistakes – we are only human.

2) Try to find time to relax.

This might feel hard if you can’t do anything to stop a situation that is making you stressed. But if you can allow yourself a short break, this can help with how you feel.

Try to take breaks in your day for things you enjoy – whether that’s a gentle stroll in the park or reading a few pages of a book.  

Even if you can’t physically get away, your imagination can transport you to somewhere you feel calm.

  • Think of somewhere relaxing and peaceful. You might choose a memory of somewhere you’ve been, or a place you have imagined.
  • Close your eyes and think about the details of this place. What does it look like? What kind of colours and shapes can you see? Can you hear any sounds? Is it warm or cool? Let your mind drift and your body relax.

3) Set boundaries with your screen time.

Scrolling through your phone or flicking through Netflix may feel like an ‘escape’ but can actually ramp up stress.

You might feel pressure to constantly check your social media accounts and respond to messages and notifications. This can cause feelings of anxiety and stress. Regularly reading news and information sites during negative world events, also make you feel worse. This is sometimes called ‘doomscrolling’.

You could try to:

  • Set yourself limits, and try to stick to them – like only looking at the news at a certain time of day, or for a set amount of time
  • Mute notifications from news websites and apps, so you only engage with the news when you choose to

4) Spend time in nature.

Spending time in nature can help to reduce stress and improve wellbeing. As human beings, we have a fundamental need to connect with nature.

You could try going for a walk in a green space, taking care of indoor plants, or spending time with animals.

Our nature and mental health pages have more information about green spaces across Bromley, Lewisham and Greenwich.

If you are unable to get out, you can join Libby from our Greenwich counselling service as she connects you with nature through her Guided Meditation Video.

5) Look after your physical health.

Getting enough sleep, staying physically active and eating a balanced diet can make stress easier to manage.

Stress can sometimes make these things difficult to look after. But even small changes can make a big difference.

Sometimes, when we are stressed – can forget to drink enough water. If you become dehydrated, this can make it harder to concentrate or think clearly.

It may help to try and track your fluid intake. You could try writing it down or using a reminder on your phone.

Check out BLG Mind’s Guidance: How are physical activity and mental health connected?

Find out how you can support your team with our Workplace Wellbeing Training. Get in touch: or check out Mental Health Training.

Remember, different things work for different people. We all experience stress, but that doesn’t mean that we need to manage it alone.

Do you need some support with your mental health?

Find out about our mental health services across Bromley, Lewisham and Greenwich:

Telephone Bromley: 020 3328 0365

Telephone Greenwich: 020 8853 1735

Telephone Lewisham: 020 8609 6747