What is stress? Stress is the bodies response to the demands in our lives. It involves automatic processes that are activated in an attempt to protect ourselves from perceived threats. 

Stress is more than just an emotional state, it involves physical alterations to our body, including the accelerated release of hormones such as cortisol and adrenaline, the depletion of the immune system and a general strain on normal bodily functions and anatomical systems. Healthy amounts of stress can actually be of great benefit in helping us rise to challenges, stay focused and even enhance our abilities in emergency situations. However, stress can become detrimental to our health if the nervous and endocrine systems become overworked and drained by ongoing stressful demands.

​beyondblue's Seven Tips to Manage Stress

1. Postpone major life change

Making major changes in your life can be stressful at any time. If you’re already feeling stressed or anxious, it might be best to avoid or delay significant events, such as moving house or changing jobs. 

2. Resolve personal conflicts 

Stress in personal relationships can be a major contributor to anxiety and depression. Learning how to communicate honestly with people and address problems or conflicts as they arise is important. A counsellor or psychologist can help you find ways to work through your problems.

3. Do the things you enjoy 

Take your mind off your worries by making sure you allow plenty of time for enjoyable activities, such as listening to music, reading, gardening, or spending time with family and friends. Try doing something creative or learning a new craft – a project, such as making a gift for a friend, can provide a goal to work towards and give you a great sense of achievement.

4. Control your work & study

Work and study play a big role in our lives, but it’s important to have a sustainable work/life balance. If work is increasing your stress levels, avoid long hours and additional responsibilities, and learn to say ‘no’ more often. 

5. Exercise regularly 

Physical exercise can help relieve tension and relax your mind. Team sports can be a great way to socialise and connect with others while exercising. Try to do some physical exercise every day, even if it’s just going for a walk. 

6. Get support 

Simply talking to someone such as a friend, doctor or counsellor can help relieve stress. Don’t be afraid to ask for support at home, at work or in your other activities. 

7. Remember to relax 

Incorporating breathing and muscle relaxation exercises into your daily routine may be helpful. They can also be used as short-term coping strategies. Some people find meditation or yoga a good way to unwind.

Find out more here. 

Get Support for Stress


Call or chat online with a trained mental health professional. They'll be there to listen, offer support and point you in the right direction.

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THIS WAY UP offers a free ‘Coping with Stress’ course that will show you how to challenge your thoughts, slow your breathing and work through your problems.

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For urgent assistance call Lifeline which is a 24-hour telephone counselling service. 13 11 14

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