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A big test. A disagreement with a friend. Finding the right college. There are millions of things that can cause stress, and everyone experiences it, but you don’t have to don’t let it ruin your day. Thankfully, there are great ways to handle stress using some simple (and fairly easy) methods.

Get Moving
Go for a run. Take a bike for a spin. Throw on a kickboxing video. Whatever gets your heart pumping helps reduce stress. The energy you’ve built up through worrying may be released through exercise, and furthermore, it could get your mind off of your anxiety for a few minutes, helping you tackle the problem once you’ve given it some time.

Seems easy enough, right? (After all, everyone does it.) But concentrating on your breathing may actually calm you down and clear your mind. Try taking a deep breath in through your nose, pushing your diaphragm down and out, and exhale through your mouth slowly. After a few minutes, you should feel relaxed and full of (good) energy.

Eat Well
As a preventative measure, make sure you’re eating healthy foods. Avoid foods with high levels of sugar and caffeine, as they can increase your heart rate and make you feel more anxious. You’ll want to make sure you drink plenty of water so you stay hydrated and clearheaded.

Get Some Sleep
It seems like we can never get enough sleep, but it really is an amazing way of realigning yourself. Commit yourself to going to bed an hour early each day for a week, and you may find that tackling the next day’s problems is an easier feat. After a week of more sleep, your stress should diminish, leaving you more refreshed and energized.

Talk with Friends
Everyone knows what it feels like to be stressed. You gain a new perspective on your anxiety when talking to those closest to you. Simply talking about it you will help you verbalize the problem and may help you find the solution.

Plug In
Sometimes you just need to escape your stress for a bit, and a great way to do that is by listening to music. Some find it best to crank some house beats, while others want soothing orchestral music. Find some tunes that work best for you, create a “Stress Playlist” and throw it on next time you’re fretting about something.

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