How To Not Let Things Bother You? How To Stay Calm And Not Stress Out!

Some people are just naturally unbothered, while others have to work at it. No matter which side of the fence you fall on, there is little to no chance that nothing at all gets under your skin. If you are hoping to learn how to not let things bother you, consider taking a deep dive into what that looks like for you specifically, instead of general practices.

Once you know yourself on a deeper level, you can manage this part of your life more efficiently. Often we have trouble solving problems because we unintentionally start somewhere in the middle instead of at the root. Taking shortcuts might be a good temporary fix, but it is essential to go below the surface for sustainable change.

Make proper identifications

Nobody can tell you exactly what you should or should not feel bothered by; that is an incredibly personal concept. This also means that you must be the one to do the work. Identify what things bother you consistently, then assess whether that they have merit or not.

How do you react?

Pay attention to how you react. Are your reactions mainly mental, or are you experiencing physical and emotional responses as well? This will help you assign proper weight to each situation. If something bothers you daily, like, that your roommate does not hang up their towels in the bathroom, but you brush it off and get over it within seconds, that reaction does not warrant a high level of your energy.

Conversely, suppose you have a constantly untidy roommate who leaves food around to rot and attract bugs, leading you to feel bothered physically. In that case, you should probably address this situation. In some cases, it is almost impossible to stop letting things bother you. As humans, we typically need a process and an approach when something has been festering for some time.

how to not let things bother you

Identify triggers and triggering situations

In the same fashion that you note your reactions, pay attention to your surroundings when these feelings come about. Individual triggers and triggering situations are almost always part of a pattern, and if you notice feeling the same way in certain situations each time you are in them, that is a trigger.

Here are some common ways to determine if you are being triggered by someone or something:

  • Sudden mood changes in one direction or another could be an indication of being triggered. A spike in your mindset and attitude are directly related to your immediate surroundings.
  • Your heart starts pounding, or you feel/appear flush. When your body responds by surging energy to your heart, causing it to beat faster than usual, or a rush of blood through your veins causes you to blush, get a hot flash, or even form hives.
  • Sudden but extreme discomfort. Suppose you go from feeling comfortable to uncomfortable on a significant level in a short period. In that case, that is a prime example of your mind telling you that something feels unsavory.
  • Strong emotional responses such as:
    • Anger
    • Fear
    • Sadness
    • Body numbness
    • Emotionally out of control
    • Negative feelings and negative emotions

Things to come to terms with

Sometimes things bother you in the present moment, and when that happens, it is critical to understand that there are little things that are just facts of life and that even a qualified mental health professional would be hard-pressed to avoid.

You have little to no control

Do not take this one at face value, as you always have control over yourself. However, when things bother you, it is important to remember that if they are annoying things coming from another person, a specific event, etc., you cannot change other people. For example, if you are at the grocery store and the line is excruciatingly long, causing you to be bothered, while you cannot control the speed at which it moves, or the number of people in front of you, you can control if you wait in it or not.

You might never be fully unbothered

If you are seeking to be in a state where nothing bothers you ever, under any circumstances, you might be in the dark about how unrealistic of a possibility that is. Keep in mind that if you know someone who appears never to let anything get them, they have likely just mastered troubleshooting these situations, not how to make them disappear completely.

Some things might hinge on something else

This is why taking inventory is encouraged. When we take things personally, it is because they are just that, personal. Consider the possibility that what you are articulating as being what bothers you is, in fact, just a scapegoat for something else. In romantic relationships, this is incredibly common. For example, it may bother you that your partner never cleans the house, but the root of this feeling might be a lack of cohesion in your lives across the board, which is only being shown to you through menial examples, like daily chores.

Great tips for coping with the small things

As we walk through our daily lives, it is important to have tools on hand to help us do so. When little things come across your path, and irritate you, here are some ways to get them out of your path.

Do absolutely nothing

Sometimes no reaction is the best reaction, specifically if the situation is small or insignificant and an expected part of daily life. If you can teach yourself the skill of non-reaction, you are going to be better for it. Pay attention though how you flex this muscle. Becoming disengaged is not something that you are going to want in the long run. Learn yourself and what it feels like to ignore something minor first instead of something heavier and more significant.

Do not overdramatize

When a situation does require you to react, work your hardest to assign a level of reaction that is in line with the circumstance at hand. If you are talking about things that bother you after the fact, be sure that you are retelling the story as it happened. The main reason for this is because if you over exaggerate, it can cause you to be even more upset. If you make a big deal out of something that was not as big as you made it out to be, you are sabotaging your chances of having the feelings of irritation fade away. Here are some examples of over dramatizations:

  • When you order a sandwich at a restaurant with no tomatoes, but it arrives at your table with tomatoes, and you later tell a friend, “The service was terrible, I could not even eat my food, and I don’t think the restrooms were clean.”
  • When someone is late to meet you, and you paint the picture afterward like “They were 30 minutes late arriving, I was starving, I almost forgot my purse and traffic was terrible.”

Yes, these are very specific examples, but they give you a general idea of how making a mountain out of a molehill can ruin the big picture for you.

Be positive in general

If your default setting is positive and happy, you will naturally be less bothered. This can also help you understand both your own mistakes and that everyone makes mistakes and takes them in stride. The brighter your outlook, the less hurtful things will affect you. This is one of the best tips for increasing your overall happiness as well.

Give grace and have empathy

It might seem counterintuitive that a way to cope with something external which bothers you is to give grace, but it is a great way to deal with the situation. This does not mean turning a blind eye or ignoring things that happen. Instead, it means that if you can handle things on a human level, you will be better for it, specifically in situations where you want to know how to not let things bother you that another person is causing.

If the other person lacks the self-awareness to recognize what they are doing, it takes practice, but show them patience. Giving people a chance to readjust themselves without you jumping down their throat will create a better opportunity for long-term progress.

Walk away and take a break

If things feel heated, either inside your mind/body or within an interaction with another person, walk away. There is no reason you cannot take a break from something that is bothering you to collect yourself and find a peaceful and respectful resolve. Sometimes operating under the assumption that things have to be handled right away can lead to saying or doing something that we will later regret.

Coping with the big things

Not all situations are created equal, and sometimes you must give more of yourself to something than you anticipated. According to the American Psychological Association, there are healthy ways to handle stress that you need to be aware of. When a person, event, situation, etc., is affecting you on a large scale, you likely have to employ more coping mechanisms than the tactics mentioned above.

Do not apologize for how you feel

Specifically, if you are in a bad mood or feeling burdened by someone else’s words or actions, do not apologize for how you feel. Once you do that, you are subliminally stating that although you have voiced your feelings, you no longer believe that they matter, so nobody else needs to either.

This can happen as a result of low self-esteem. When you cannot stop worrying about the optics of a tricky situation, you might try to downplay the level at which it took a toll on you just to keep the peace. If you hope to build up your self-confidence, start by learning the difference between saying sorry for your words or actions and your feelings.

how to not let things bother you

Do not be a sponge for other people’s problems

Is it possible that you are letting things bother you that belong to someone else? If you want to understand how to not let things bother you, you should start by recognizing if you are absorbing other people’s problems. Giving support to a loved one does not have to come at the price of your sanity. Start living with boundaries and not let someone else’s problems become yours.

Do not stuff your feelings

If you are intentionally shoving your feelings aside, stop now. Also, who do you believe is benefiting from this? Do you know that this habit can lead to you letting the little things that you never even noticed start to impact you? When we refuse to face our emotions head-on, that is our mind’s indirect way of convincing us that we are not worth the effort to do so, and we are worth the effort.

Have an ally

Having an ally or a trusted confidant that you can be vulnerable around will provide immediate help. Knowing that this person will listen, offer support, not judge, and put you in check when/if needed is priceless. When big things cross your path, and you do not see clearly, having an ally means you benefit from an outside perspective that you already trust. So regardless of the issue at hand, you know they have your best interests at heart when they offer advice or solutions.

Limit screen time

When things are happening in the world, it is human nature that they bother us on some level. However, when your screen time is so excessive that you become overwhelmed and can no longer separate yourself from particular situations, it is time to turn off your devices.

This can be especially helpful with high-attention court cases, political uproar, or the aftermath of a controversial sporting event. If you stop letting screens take over your ability to form your own opinions, you will find that other things bother you less as a result.

Practice discretion

There is an adage ‘keep it private until it’s permanent, and that can be a good rule of thumb to go by. When you choose to practice discretion with your personal choices, you are protecting yourself from outsiders trying not to let your moment happen. For example, if you have a loved one that has never fully supported your career, maybe you do not share changes in your job with them. Other people do not have to work for your boss, complete your tasks, and live off your salary, and you can stop letting them breed negativity by electing to share less information.

Believe in something bigger

Perhaps for you, this means religion, or simply spirituality, or maybe you do not know at all what it means for your life, but you like the idea of it. No matter your persuasion on this topic, if you believe in something bigger out there, something bigger than yourself, and something bigger than your current life’s circumstances, you will find that you have an overall happier life. When this is your focus, you can deal with not letting things bother you more peacefully.

Consider professional help

You are the only one who can determine if professional help is, or is not, the best thing for you. But if you are curious about ways that informed professional advice can lead you to a world where you stop letting things bother you, you owe it to yourself to explore that. There are also options to speak with mental health professionals to help you with your specific circumstances.

Keep an active log of your triggers, what bothers you, how you feel, etc., before your first appointment. This category list can help the professional target the ‘why’ behind things that bother you and create a plan to combat them, specific to your needs.

Self-care tips for when you are too caught up

When you are spinning and you cannot stop letting things bother you, here are a few self-care suggestions that you can test out to see if adding them to your daily lifestyle can prevent you from having a moment like that in the future.

  • Epsom salt bath – This mineral will naturally detox your body and relax you from a holistic perspective. Sometimes when our bodies are still, that gives way for our minds to be as well.
  • Aromatherapy showers – You can purchase products containing aromatherapy scents you enjoy, burn candles while you shower, or even use essential oils to make discs that you can place in the shower with you that are activated by steam to release the calming scents.
  • Exercise – Regular exercise will help your mind and body operate and their peaks, but if you deal with things that bother you, even ten quick jumping jacks can get your blood pumping more productively.
  • Go outside – There is so much research that supports nature as a healing property. Natural light and fresh air can go a long way towards helping you unwind once you have let things bother you.
  • Meditation – The practice of mindful stillness and breathing is a tried and true way to be in the moment.
  • Unplug – Take a break from devices. This means no TV, cell phone, reading tablet, etc. There are too many possibilities for these devices to accelerate your issues.


You can read as many counselor-related articles as you want, but if you do not make an effort to put their research into practice, you have little hope of a life where you let things happen and do not align your feelings with them. Big or small, think about the positivity that will come with releasing the burden of a bothered life. Pay attention to how you feel as you try out different methods and be honest about what does and does not work. Understand that there are no timelines or blueprints for getting yourself to the other side.

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