7 Steps to Instant Calm

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Look for the signs

The best way to manage your stress is to keep it from building up in the first place. But it can be hard to tell when you're headed toward the danger zone, because your body's signals can be subtle. "People often aren't aware that stress affects quality of sleep—you may get eight hours, but still not get much deep sleep, so you feel worn out," Dr. Emmons says.

To keep your stress level in check, take a few minutes each day to think over any unusual changes in your habits or physical health that may be spurred by anxiety.

Next: Shift your focus