The Secret to Overcoming Stress as a Millennial

            - Guatama Buddha             – Guatama Buddha

Have I ever mentioned that I think Guatama Buddha is/was the absolute sh*t? It’s probably inappropriate to use Buddha and a censored curse word in the same sentence, but it’s ironically a pretty appropriate way to emphasize how freaking brilliant he was.

Think about it. Virtually any problem we experience in life, there’s almost always a complementary Buddha quote to make sense of it all. Example:

According to TIME, young adults are currently the most stressed out generation in the U.S. I don’t doubt that many of us can attest to this.

“[Young adults] were sheltered in many ways, with a lot of high expectations for what they should achieve. Individual failure is difficult to accept when confronted with a sense you’re an important person and expected to achieve,” Mark Hais, a market researcher and co-author on two books on that generation told USA Today

Millennials are also more likely to be diagnosed with depression and anxiety disorders than older generations. So what can we do?

We’ve heard Idina Menzel belt it perhaps one to many times, but the truth is — let it go.

Buddha was onto something when he stated that the three things that matter most in life are loving deeply, living life fully and letting go. Though these three things may be easier said than done, we can at least try to give ourselves a break. We live in a society where most of the things that we currently stress about didn’t even exist 100 years ago. Example: According to this source, only 7.6% of women were enrolled in college in the U.S. in 1920. Crazy, right?

It’s safe to say that we’ve come a long way, and (most of the time) we’re doing just fine.

One of my favorite de-stressing techniques is the 10 year test. Whenever you find yourself over stressing about something, ask yourself will this matter in 10 years? If so, get up and do something about it! In many cases, our stress comes from within ourselves. It’s nasty habits such as overthinking or procrastination that result in a negative frame of mind.

And if the answer’s no? Let it go. 

Also, have you guys ever heard of a Buddha Board? Because I’m obsessed. Not gonna lie, mine is totally the inspiration behind this post. So wth am I talking about?

A Buddha Board is basically chalkboard looking canvas that you can paint on with water. It comes with a brush and you literally just dip it in a cup of water and draw. It dries pretty quickly, so you can continue painting as long as you’d like.

I totally recommend investing in one because they’re SO much fun (I’m linking a few options below btw). But there’s also a really great message behind them (as a lit. nerd I always dig the symbolism). Buddha Boards are the “master of the art of letting go”. Basically, the idea is that you paint something on the board and once it disappears you’ve let it go. So cool.

By the way, this is not sponsored in any way. I just love my Buddha Board!

Anyways…BOTTOM LINE: There’s no use in over stressing about something that won’t matter in 10 years, let a lone a few months. If the perks don’t outweigh the effort you put in/stress toll, odds are it won’t be worth it in the end.

Also: Here are a few more tips on de-stressing.

What are your stress management techniques? I’d love to hear!



  • Good advice 🙂 I actually first encountered Buddha Boards during a Creative Writing class in which a teacher used the board to write our prompt for the day, and when the "ink" had dried, we were out of time. This usually took a good 8-10 minutes because she had a pretty heavy hand 😉 In terms of stress management, I spend a lot of time unwinding with my fellow grad students by going out and drinking (OK, maybe not the healthiest way, but it’s still a great way to destress) or hanging out with my boyfriend. A lot of the time, I use iPhone apps like Calm or Breathe for simple, quick meditations. 🙂

    • Holly Habeck

      What a cool way to use a Buddha Board! I’m going to have to look into those apps too, because I’ve heard a lot of good things about meditation!