Hollywood's Most Zen Women Tell Us Their Secrets for Dealing With Stress

Talking about mental health is thankfully becoming less and less taboo. And though we still have a long way to go, the ability to relate to seemingly perfect Hollywood figures on issues like stress and anxiety can be a really positive thing. Yes, it's cool to be inspired by the aspirational beauty looks and glamorous lifestyles of celebrities like Nicole Kidman and Mandy Moore, but it's also important to remember that they're humans who deal with serious pressure (e.g., the world's eyes fixated on their every move, or having multimillion-dollar projects riding on their backs). We've had the privilege of speaking with a bunch of Hollywood mainstays over the last year or two, and the topic of how they cope with stress often comes up. Today, we're rounding up our favorite tips from some of entertainment's most zen A-listers. Keep scrolling to read their astute anti-stress advice.

1. Focus on a brain-stimulating workout.


(Image credit: @ddlovato)

"I love doing Brazilian jiujitsu for my mood. If I'm in a bad mood, I do that and it completely releases all the stress and all the tension I was feeling. I have such a love for it, so it excites me and makes me happy when I do it. It's like a human chess game. You're constantly thinking. There's never a pause you can take unless you're in a certain position, but anyway, there are no moments when you can just sit there and chill. You're constantly thinking about what they're going to do, how they're going to attack, and how you're going to defend. So it's this constant mind game. It's really fun." — Demi Lovato

2. Talk openly about your mental health.


(Image credit: sashablane)

"How I control my anxiety? I'm aware I can talk about it. Because I have established that with all of my friends. I'm going to be straight-up with how I feel, even when I go to work. If I go somewhere, I'm like, [I've had] two breakdowns already. This is what you are about to get today. Hi, everyone! That's how I keep myself calm. We don't have to go talk about it in a corner. I will say it out loud: Bitch is crazy today, or I feel great today, so let's do stuff! So yeah, talking—talking just helps so much." Sasha Lane

3. Push past the fear of telling people "no."


(Image credit: @nicolekidman)

"I've had to work really hard not to get myself down with [guilt about saying no]. But ultimately, my family benefits and I benefit when I go, Ah, I'm so glad I didn't say yes to going out on Saturday night." — Nicole Kidman

4. Set your phone on "do not disturb" mode.


(Image credit: @madelame)

"After [work], I'll come home, I'll put my phone on 'do not disturb,' I'll put on one of my favorite playlists, I'll light a bunch of candles, I'll make a bubble bath, and I'll bring a book in there—it's a whole thing. I have my robe on, I have my diffuser going—I really love my alone time as well. I also like to go to bed early—it's a treat to me." — Madeleine Petsch

5. Recognize your stress triggers, and breathe through them.


(Image credit: @shiolikutsuna)

"I tend to worry over things that haven't happened yet, and I know it's a negative aspect, but it's just how I am. So I just really stress myself out while I'm waiting on things, because you know, we have so much waiting time for jobs like this. So it really helps when I have just that maybe 10-minute or 15-minute break to really just calm myself, and I get to a neutral state where I can really relax and just work and stress less. I just like to sit and focus on my breathing. I think it's the most helpful thing." — Shioli Kutsuna

6. Integrate a spiritual practice into your lifestyle.


(Image credit: @chloegmoretz)

"Integrating yoga and meditation into my life, and finding my own kind of spiritual practice was really important for me. Learning to live in your own silence for a little bit … is what meditation really helped me with. I started to force myself to integrate yoga into my morning ritual. So sure, you turn your alarm off, but before you look at your phone, you get out of bed and you do a little yoga routine, and just that moment for yourself will connect so much spiritually and will really ground you, and really help you start your day off on the right side instead of being rushed and frazzled and inundated from the moment you open your eyes." Chloé Grace Moretz

7. Try therapy.


(Image credit: @mandymooremm)

"Finding some means of self-care ... [like] going to therapy. I find sometimes when I feel the least like I need to go to therapy is when it's the most beneficial. Like, that's the time for me to go." — Mandy Moore

8. Be more intentional about your food.


(Image credit: @harinef)

"I eat a plant-based diet—that's something that works for me. It's not necessarily something that works for everybody, but I try to be mindful about food—knowing where it comes from when I eat something." Hari Nef

8. Work out your stresses at the gym.


(Image credit: @adwoaaboah)

"I definitely exercise a lot, but that's because it sorts my head out. If I have a free day, I'll be at the gym. Like lots of other people in the world, I suffer from anxiety, and I need to be able to quiet myself and concentrate on something else." Adwoa Aboah

10. Take a bath.


(Image credit: @gwynethpaltrow)

"I take a bath every single night before I go to bed. It's my ritual to get grounded and get the energy of the day off. I have all different kinds of salts, and oils, and scrubs. I'm a real bath girl." Gwyneth Paltrow

11. Dance it off.


(Image credit: @larsenthompson)

"If I'm really stressed out or going through a hard time, dance is definitely my escape. It's a way for me to express myself through my movement. So I'll go to my home studio Academy of Dance Westlake Village. It's where I've trained ever since I was little." — Larsen Thompson

There you have it—a few new ideas to try next time you're feeling especially stressed.


This article is provided for informational purposes only and is not intended to be used in the place of advice of your physician or other medical professionals. You should always consult with your doctor or healthcare provider first with any health-related questions.

Amanda Montell
Features Editor
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