Well-Being//

Seven Ways I Cope With the Stress of Living in a Metropolitan City

Pollution, stress, lowered immunity, and mood swings are some of the downsides of living in metros. Here’s how to cope with these everyday stresses.

While there are many pluses of living in a big city like Mumbai, many increasingly find it difficult to manage the stresses that come with it.
While there are many pluses of living in a big city like Mumbai, many increasingly find it difficult to manage the stresses that come with it.

Living in a metropolitan city can be overwhelming. We live increasingly busy lives and survive high levels of pollution and noise without noticing how it impacts us.

A few years ago, I struggled with low levels of energy, mood swings, brain fog and an inability to sleep well. I decided to take my well-being seriously and bring small changes in every facet of my life. Today, I am a changed person. Not only do I manage to get more work done, I do it without losing balance.

Here are the seven steps I’ve followed to ensure that I stay physically, mentally and emotional sound.

I switch off my phone before I go to bed

I stopped using social media apps on my phone once I realised they were pushing me towards restlessness and distraction. Now, if at all, I check social media on my computer and fully avoid electronics at least a 60 minutes before I go to bed. This is important because the blue light phones emit suppresses our sleep by fooling our brain into thinking that it’s morning. Instead, I read a physical book which helps me sleep better and wake up calmer in the morning.

I meditate for 45-60 minutes in the morning

This is a wonderfully silent and peaceful time for me. It makes me feel centred, emotionally strong and helps me tackle everything the day has to offer. It’s like what Rumi said, “A little while alone in your room will prove more valuable than anything else that could ever be given to you.”

I eat light

I’ve realised that the lighter I feel, the better I can handle my day and my emotions. Therefore, I eat light and fill my meals with a lot of fruits, vegetables and lentils. I also practise intermittent fasting two-three times a week. This helps detox my body which, in turn, improves my emotional and mental state.

I exercise

I exercise four-five times a week. It rejuvenates me and it helps balance my mood and feel good. I especially try to take my exercising routine outside so that I spend some time in nature. Nature has a calming effect on me.

I breathe deeply

Deep breathing, several times a day, promotes well-being by increasing the oxygen supply in our cells. Ten deep breaths several times a day ensure I can deal with everything.

I practise mindfulness

I try to be mindful of everything, even my food. When I am eating my meals, I like to shut everything down and focus on my food. Eating  hurriedly causes me to feel anxious and stressed. Small, mindful bites, instead, add to my overall sense of peace.

I practise gratitude daily

Gratitude helps me shift my focus from negativity. Just saying a simple ‘thank you’ several times a day and remembering what’s good in my life helps me regroup myself and keep a positive frame of mind.

More from Thrive Global India:

How I Found My Way out of a Crippling Depression

When Breakfast Became a Meditation Practice

Why 8 Hours of Sleep Before an Interview is Essential

IVF Expert Dr Malpani’s Four Easy Keep Fit Fixes

How To Cash-in on the ATM of Happiness

How I Went from Unhealthy to Healer

Why Meditation Makes You Happy

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People look for retreats for themselves, in the country, by the coast, or in the hills . . . There is nowhere that a person can find a more peaceful and trouble-free retreat than in his own mind. . . . So constantly give yourself this retreat, and renew yourself.

- Marcus Aurelius

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