The Good News Is That Being Stressed Out By Life Isnt A Fait Accompli Our Brains Innate Neural Plasticity Equip Us With The Ability To Short Circuit Our Stress Response And Expand Our Bandwidth For Responding More Constructively Calmly And Courageously To Stress Triggers In Our Environment
So whatever stress youre feeling right now, start by noticing the story youre spinning – in your own head or verbally to others – about your situation. Are you talking up the stressors in ways that keep you focused on what you dont want? If so, reframe how youre viewing your situation, adopting language that:
- Reflects belief in your ability to manage whatever youre facing .
- Frames the stressor as a vital stimulus for growth and necessary for you to thrive
Im in an interesting situation thats teaching me a lot and building my ability for more inspiring challenges. Ive got everything it takes to figure this out one day at a time.
My son 19 year old son Ben told me that after the last 12 months hes far more confident in his ability to deal with lifes challenges moving forward. In other words: the stress of graduating high school online and starting college in a pandemic have built his muscles for life in ways that will serve him long after this pandemic is over.
The last 12 months have held many stressors. But theyve also taught us that while life can change on a dime, we have the inbuilt capacity to adapt quickly and rise to challenges we might never have imagined, much less prepared for. More so, that in the midst of what might be called stressful situations we can discover strengths and hone talents that may otherwise have lain dormant.
Ways To Stop Being So Stressed All The Time
By | Last updated December 20, 2017
Sometimes the world is just too much. You feel like youre just keeping it together, your commitments and deadlines are hanging by a thread, and your mental health is falling by the wayside. You feel like your brain has holes in it youve got headaches, nausea, and tight shoulders you cant ease and breathing deeply makes you feel like youre on the verge of tears.
This is normal, but it shouldnt have to be. Stress is an important part of our livesin healthy doses it can be a good motivator, and keep us reaching for our goals. Past a certain threshold, however, chronic stress ages us, makes us more prone to falling ill, increases our chances of gaining unhealthy weight, and, of course, simply makes us feel like were falling apart. So, what steps can we all take to gain control over the stuff thats stressing us out?
Set Boundaries Around Your Inbox
When email first became popular, it was easy to limit how much time we spent with our inbox. You checked it while at your office computer and didnt think about it again once you clocked out in the evening. But now we have access to our email 24/7, thanks to smartphones and other mobile devices. And whether youre spending time with your family or running errands, as soon as you see that new email notification, youre tempted to respond immediately.
While you might think answering emails right away makes you a better employee, the stress of always being available quickly takes its toll. Pick a few times a day when your attention is dedicated to your inbox. Having planned email breaks allows you to stay focused throughout the day on other tasks without your inbox getting out of control.
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Create Sacred Spaces For Yourself
Having a space thats just for you, where you can relax and decompress, is essential. As mentioned, schedule time to spend in your sacred space. Meditate on the yoga mat, read a book, take a bath, or simply lie on the bed in a room thats all your own. Whatever you choose to do, make sure you make time for yourself where you can turn off outside stimuli and just center and focus inward on yourself.
Make the spaces that you spend the most time in, such as your bedroom and your office at work, more comfortable and relaxing. Maybe add soft lighting, potted plants, or textural depth with textiles and rugs. This eases the mental burden that we carry every day without even realizing, the unconscious work we have to do to self-soothe in stressful situations. If we can make our environments do even a little bit of that work for us, we ease the burden on our overall mental health.
These are just a few basic building blocks to get started with when trying to tackle the stress monster in your life. Maybe try easing into these one at a time, or take little steps towards just a few of these to start out.
Are you trying to incorporate any of these strategies into your daily routine? Are you running into any roadblocks, or are you having success? Message me and let me know. Ask me any questions you may have about these tips, and let us know how youre doing in the comments below!
Offer Yourself Forgiveness And Compassion
Just like the forgiveness you might offer someone who wronged you, self-forgiveness allows you to let go of past events and move forward.
So, instead of giving yourself a hard time, tell yourself its all right:
Waiting to do that project didnt turn out so well, but its OK to make mistakes. Now I know what not to do next time.
Self-compassion can also go a long way toward easing the harsh criticism and self-blame that tend to trail in procrastinations wake.
Instead of focusing on how you messed up , offer yourself some words of comfort.
If it helps, consider what you might say to a friend:
- It sounds like youre struggling right now, but I can tell youre doing your best.
- That assignment sounds really stressful. I know you want to do the best work possible, but its just a first draft, right? You can always improve on it later if your team has any suggestions.
Dont you deserve that same kindness?
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How Can I Stop Being So Stressed
I’ve always been an easy-going person, never easily flustered and always calm. But for the last year I’ve noticed a change in myself. These days I find myself becoming easily stressed and flustered. If something doesn’t work out as planned or expected it stresses me out and makes me angry.I now find important decision-making extremely difficult, especially lately, when Ive had to make choices about colleges I might want to go to. Leaving school, the parties and all that, is supposed to be an enjoyable experience but I’m too stressed to even think about enjoying it all.I wish I could calm myself down more. I don’t want to become frustrated by simple things. Is there any way I can get back to my old easy-going self?
It sounds like the last year has been quite turbulent for you. It must be difficult to come to terms with these changes in your reactions to things, particularly when its affecting your ability to make decisions about things and to enjoy yourself.
Everyone feels anxious some of the time, especially when stressful things are happening. But feelings of anxiety and stress can be hard to handle, especially when they are a constant part of your life. Many people suffer from stress and related anxieties, so do be assured that you are not alone.
Some people find simple relaxation techniques such as deep breathing and taking time out for themselves very helpful.
Answered by SANE on 30-Oct-2013
Connect With A Trusted Friend
Talking face to face with a friend is a wonderful way to relieve stress. The person listening doesnt necessarily have to fix your issues. They can just be a good listener. A trusted friend or family member can listen without judging you.
If you dont have anyone close to turn to, check if your employer has an employee assistance program with counseling services.
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Procrastination And Emotional Regulation
Research suggests that procrastination often relates to your mood and emotional mindset.
In other words, procrastination doesnt happen because youre lazy and unproductive or dont know how to do something . It happens because you dread the emotional distress you foresee.
Maybe you already experienced this irritation and frustration firsthand and dont want a repeat. But you could also have some preconceived ideas about how awful and difficult that chore or assignment will turn out to be.
Either way, you set the task aside, promising yourself to handle it later when you feel better able to manage those feelings.
Sometimes, its easy to see where the distress comes from:
- You put off a quick phone call to schedule your dental check-up, because youre certain you have a cavity or two and feel anxious about facing an afternoon of drilling.
- You avoid calling your sister after an argument, because you know you need to admit you were wrong and apologize.
You might have a harder time pinning down other sources of emotional distress, especially when they relate to ongoing or deeper-seated sources of emotional turmoil.
Ways To Stop Stressing About Things You Can’t Control
There’s a brutal truth about life that some people refuse to acceptyou have no control over many of the things that happen to you.
People who resist this truth fall into two categoriescontrol freaks or worry warts. Control freaks believe if they can gain enough control over others, and the situations they find themselves in, they can somehow prevent bad things from happening.
Worry warts, on the other hand, fret about everything from natural disasters to deadly diseases. Its as if they believe thinking hard enough about all the potential worst case scenarios will somehow keep them safe.
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But neither of these strategies can prevent a catastrophe. Instead, worry warts and control freaks put their time and energy into the wrong places. And ultimately, those strategies backfire and create even more stress.
Here are six ways to stop stressing about the things you can’t control:
1. Determine what you can control.
In reality, there are many things in life you have zero control over. You cant force your spouse to change, you cant prevent a storm from happening, and you cant control how other people feel.
Sometimes, all you can control is your effort and your attitude. When you put your energy into the things you can control, you’ll be much more effective.
2. Identify your fears.
Are you predicting a catastrophic outcome? Do you doubt your ability to cope with an undesirable outcome?
3. Concentrate on your influence.
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What To Do When Youre Going Through A Stressful Time
Some stressors get resolved relatively quickly and go away . Other stressors are ones you have to cope with for long stretches of time, such as going through a divorce or breakup, managing a difficult health diagnosis, or looking for a new job. It could even be something exciting say if youre preparing for an upcoming move or planning a wedding.
Anything that puts high demands on you can be stressful even positive things, Dr. Schiff says. On these occasions, sticking to your usual routines can be helpful.
There is some reassurance in knowing whats going to happen and when, not to mention that routines promote positive physical and mental health, Schiff says. When faced with events that are scary and largely out of our control, its important to realize what you can control.
Its also important to acknowledge the extra stress youre feeling and perhaps take your stress management up a notch.
Its also a good idea to lean on your social circle in times like these. Spending time with family or friends who make you feel good, or finding a community with whom you share interests or spiritual beliefs, reduces stress, says Alka Gupta, MD, an internal medicine and integrative medicine doctor in private practice in Washington, DC.
Nine Ways Successful People Defeat Stress
Feeling stressed? Of course you are. You have too much on your plate, deadlines are looming, people are counting on you, and to top it all off, you still have holiday shopping to do. You are under a lot of pressure so much that at times, you suspect the quality of your work suffers for it.
This is life in the modern workplace. It is more or less impossible to be any kind of professional these days and not experience frequent bouts of intense stress. The difference between those who are successful and those who arent is not whether or not you suffer from stress, but how you deal with it when you do.
In the spirit of Nine Things Successful People Do Differently, here are nine scientifically-proven strategies for defeating stress whenever it strikes.
1. Have self-compassion.
2. Remember the Big Picture.
3. Rely on routines.
If I ask you to name the major causes of stress in your work life, you would probably say things like deadlines, a heavy workload, bureaucracy, or your terrible boss. You probably wouldnt say having to make so many decisions, because most people arent aware that this is a powerful and pervasive cause of stress in their lives. Every time you make a decision whether its about hiring a new employee, about when to schedule a meeting with your supervisor, or about choosing rye or whole wheat for your egg salad sandwich you create a state of mental tension that is, in fact, stressful.
5. Add where and when to your to-do list.
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Taking Steps To Manage Stress
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Talk About Your Problems
If things are bothering you, talking about them can help lower your stress. You can talk to family members, friends, a trusted clergyman, your doctor, or a therapist.
And you can also talk to yourself. Itâs called self-talk and we all do it. But in order for self-talk to help reduce stress you need to make sure itâs positive and not negative.
So listen closely to what youâre thinking or saying when youâre stressed out. If youâre giving yourself a negative message, change it to a positive one. For example, donât tell yourself âI canât do this.â Tell yourself instead: âI can do this,â or âIâm doing the best I can.â
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Break Out The Bubble Gum
Feel like you’re becoming unglued? Grab a stick of gum. Research suggests that chewing gum can help relieve both stress and anxiety. It may be that the rhythmic motion of chewing helps boost blood flow to the brain. An alternative theory suggests that it’s the taste and smell of the gum that elicits the relaxation response. Next time you think, “I can’t stop stressing,” grab a stick of gum as a stress relief technique that is inexpensive, effective, and you can do it virtually everywhere.
Is It Stress Or Anxiety
Life can be stressfulyou may feel stressed about performance at school, traumatic events , or a life change. Everyone feels stress from time to time.
What is stress? Stress is the physical or mental response to an external cause, such as having a lot of homework or having an illness. A stressor may be a one-time or short-term occurrence, or it can happen repeatedly over a long time.
What is anxiety? Anxiety is your body’s reaction to stress and can occur even if there is no current threat.
If that anxiety doesnt go away and begins to interfere with your life, it could affect your health. You could experience problems with sleeping, or with your immune, digestive, cardiovascular, and reproductive systems. You also may be at higher risk for developing a mental illness such as an anxiety disorder or depression. Read more about anxiety disorders.
So, how do you know when to seek help?
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Stress: Coping With Everyday Problems
Everyone has stress. It is a normal part of life. You can feel stress in your body when you have too much to do or when you havent slept well. You can also feel stress when you worry about things like your job, money, relationships, or a friend or family member who is ill or in crisis. In response to these strains your body automatically increases blood pressure, heart rate, respiration, metabolism, and blood flow to you muscles. This response is intended to help your body react quickly and effectively to a high-pressure situation. However, when you are constantly reacting to stressful situations without making adjustments to counter the effects, you will feel stress which can threaten your health and well-being.
According to the APAs Stress in America study, nearly 70% of Americans experience physical and mental symptoms of stress, but only 37% think they are doing very well at managing stress.