Get Better at Handling Stress: 6 Unhealthy Ways to Cope

By: Daniel Click

From overly demanding bosses to natural disasters, the world is absolutely full of stressors. Although short bursts of stress have been shown to be good for you, giving you the motivation to get things done, long-term stress isn’t quite as beneficial. In fact, it can be very damaging, putting you at risk of a number of health issues. This is why you need to learn to nurture yourself in times of stress better. With that in mind, here are six unhealthy ways you shouldn’t use to cope.

  1. Lash Out At Friends

When you’ve got so much frustration and worry bubbling inside of you, lashing out at someone can be a good way to dull the stress for a while, providing a much-needed distraction. That being said, doing so can cause some pretty serious issues, especially if you fight with someone you love. Rather than get angry, you should speak with them and let them know what is going on.


  1. Drink Alcohol In Excess

Many of us find that a glass of wine or beer is a good way to wind down after a hard day. In fact, many medical professionals agree. That being said, you do need to learn when to stop. If you’re struggling, you should try getting professional help and find a men’s or women’s sober living home. Becoming dependent on alcohol will only lead to further issues, causing more stress.



  1. Grab A Tasty Snack

Like alcohol, food can easily become a crutch when dealing with difficult times. If you grab an unhealthy snack every time you get stressed, you’ll begin to associate this negative emotion with eating. This can prompt you to reach for food every time you get worried. Unfortunately, this can lead to weight gain and other health problems, which may add to your growing pile of stress.


  1. Sleep Your Days Away

We all know that lack of sleep is bad for our body and mind, but what many don’t realize is that sleeping too much can be just as harmful. If you try to sleep your troubles away, rather than deal with them, then it’s going to put you at risk. For this reason, you should stick to a bedtime routine that allows you to get between six and eight hours of sleep each night and avoid sleeping in.


  1. Make Major Lifestyle Changes

The last thing that you should do when you’re feeling overwhelmed is make a major life decision or change. After all, if you’re struggling to focus and think clearly, you’re more likely to make a decision that you’ll regret later, leading to further worries. Because of this, you should keep your hair, job, home, and everything else the same until you’ve dealt with the issue bothering you.


  1. Pretend Everything Is Fine

Dwelling on negative emotions isn’t healthy, but that doesn’t mean that you should ignore your problems either. This won’t solve anything and may even cause your troubles to grow. The best thing that you can do is make a plan on how to tackle the issue you’re facing. Make sure that you also ask for help if and when you need it.


When you’re feeling stressed, make sure that you avoid using the unhealthy coping mechanisms listed above.


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