Relaxation Tips To Reduce Stress In Your 20s

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Shorter Version

Est. Reading Time: 2 Minutes

Breathe in. Breathe out… Let it go. We all deal with stress on a regular basis with some days being more stressful than others. Stress in your 20s develops due to many different factors such as work, relationships, financial situations, exercise, injury, illness and more. While some stress can be good for us, chronic stress puts a damper on our overall health and mood. It’s important to be able to recognize stress and practice techniques to help prevent and manage stressful situations.

Health impacts of stress

Because stress is our brain’s response to some sort of change, we can train our brain to change that response to be more accepting of the change. Many of us think stress is bad for us, but small amounts of stress can actually improve cognitive function, strengthen the ability to overcome difficulties, increase productivity, and create general awareness of our mind-body connection. It’s when this little bit of stress in your 20s turns into chronic stress that we start to see changes in our weight, negative impacts in mood, poor sleep patterns, decreased energy levels, increased risk for certain diseases, and lowered ability to handle difficult situations.

Reducing stress in your 20s

Simple relaxation techniques can help you change your reaction to stressful situations and balance the amount of stress received on a daily basis. From formal practices like yoga and meditation to simply taking a walk outside or laughing with a friend, there are a variety of ways to relieve stress. Most relaxation techniques can be modified to fit your schedule whether you have a minute before walking into an important presentation or a whole day to dedicate to yourself. Here are just a few ideas of how you can reduce stress in your 20s and beyond:

  • Deep breathing. You can do this anywhere, anytime. This comes in many forms such as alternate nostril breathing and three-part breathing.
  • Meditation can also can be done whenever, wherever. Maybe start with a guided meditation, then move into more of a mindfulness meditation.
  • Journal. Write your thoughts, emotions, goals, and struggles down on paper. Try the 5-Minute Journal.
  • Go to your happy place with guided imagery.
  • Be grateful. Express thanks verbally or start a gratitude journal. Write down a list of things you are thankful for each day.
  • Exercise. Take a stroll through a quiet neighborhood or hit the gym for a tough sweat sesh. Moving your body increases those happy hormones to lift your mood.
  • Get some fresh air. Sit in the garden, go for a hike, or take your meditation outside.
  • Take time for yourself. Self-care is crucial to overall health. Read a book, take a trip, make a bubble bath, go for a round of golf, get a pedicure or take a personal day from work.
  • Talk to loved ones. Socializing with those close to you allows us to express our thoughts just as they are.
  • Laugh!
  • Listen to calming music.

Keep these in your back pocket

Remind yourself to be patient as your mind learns to change its perspective. New habits take time, so thank yourself every day for simply trying to relax.

Which of these techniques resonates with you? Take a few of these tips to keep in your back pocket because every stressful situation may need a different form of relaxation. Try something new or stick to a familiar habit. Just remind yourself to be patient as your mind learns to change its perspective. New habits take time, so thank yourself every day for simply trying to relax.

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Actionable Steps


Read the longer version

To learn more, read these articles reviewed by our professionals: 6 Relaxation Techniques to Reduce Stress by Harvard Health, 5 Powerful Stress Relievers You Can Do at Your Desk by Amy Morin, psychotherapist, and Learning to Manage Stress & Chill Like a Pro by McKel Kooienga, MS, RDN, LDN.


Be self aware

Become aware of when you feel more stressed than usual.


Practice makes perfect

Start with practicing 1-3 relaxation techniques when you feel stressed. Practice, practice, practice!


Put it on your phone

Download an app like Headspace or Calm to have a relaxation resource on hand at all times.


Do it daily

Find consistency in your relaxation routine. Consistency is key to training the mind.

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About the Author

shannon costello

Shannon Costello

Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN)

Hi, I’m Shannon! I’m a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist, Culinary Coach, and Personal Trainer. After dedicating over 8 years to the corporate wellness world, I began my own nutrition practice. Chef Shannon Nutrition focuses on plant-based nutrition and culinary coaching. My passion for culinary nutrition grew when I worked as a cooking instructor for a culinary entertainment company. After several years as an instructor and event coordinator, I moved into the role of Director of Culinary Entertainment where I developed all the recipes, menus, and instructor trainings. My dietetic’s expertise helped the company expand into allergy-friendly and health conscious menus to suit all clients.
Full Bio | LinkedIn | 1:1 Coaching

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