You Try To Manage Your Stress Instead Of Your Stressors
The biggest myth we all believe about chronic stress is that you need to get better at stress management.
But stress management is actually a terrible solution to the problem of chronics stress because youre already stressed! Its like putting a Band-Aid on a gunshot wound.
Of course, some form of Band-Aid to stop the bleeding is important if you happen to get shot. But Band-Aids should not be the primary strategy we talk about for dealing with gunshot woundswe should work like hell to avoid getting shot in the first place!
See, when we make stress management our first-line strategy, we distract ourselves from really looking at the true cause of our stress, the stressor itself.
A stressor is the thing that causes a stress response.
If youre always stressed, the real solution is to fix the original cause of the stress not the feeling of stress itself.
For example, if youre constantly stressed at work, you could try and work on doing more deep breathing exercises throughout your day. And maybe your stress level will decrease a little. But no amount of deep breathing exercises will change the fact that youre still terrible at saying no to taking on too much work.
Feeling stressed at work is the messenger trying to tell you that something about how you work is deeply wrong. Over-reliance on stress management techniques is effectively shooting the messenger.
The far more important part of the equation is the stressors that are causing the stress in the first place.
How To Stop Being Angry Stressed Defensive And Sensitive
Do you find your buttons being pushed all the time? Do you feel the world is out against you and you are all alone trying to defend your choices, priorities and opinion? And do you mull over hurtful words of others and take it so personally?
For those of us who made any choices to be different, to walk a path less trodden would enviably face lots of criticism, insults and discouragement. But if you look around, most people who achieve real success in life are those who took the path less taken.
But its still tough, because we would still be one against the whole world. It gets very hurtful especially if the put-downs comes from our family, relatives and our so-called friends. So, how do we trod on?
First, I am sure there are already lots of sites and books out there who teaches so-called success principles using mindpower and belief system. So in this post, Ill leave those out. I want share on a different aspect and I hope you would keep an open mind.
What To Do If You Have Trouble Sleeping
Sleep is often sacrificed when youre overwhelmed with stress. You may experience insomnia because of discomfort, stress from personal concerns, or side effects from your medications. If you cant sleep, try these tips:
- Establish a regular sleep schedule: go to bed and get up at the same time every day.
- Make sure your bed and surroundings are comfortable. Arrange the pillows so you can maintain a comfortable position.
- Keep your bedroom dark and quiet.
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Procrastination As A Mental Health Symptom
The source of procrastination sometimes runs a little deeper than a difficulty regulating emotions.
If you live with anxiety, for example, you might spend a lot of time worrying about what specific tasks involve or feeling nervous about what could go wrong. These kinds of fears can absolutely lead to delay.
The link between anxiety conditions and perfectionism can also play a part in procrastination. When you dont believe you can do something perfectly, you might feel anxious about doing it at all and continually put it off instead.
Depression, which often wears away at energy and self-worth, can also involve procrastination. You might neglect certain responsibilities because you cant muster up the motivation to complete them, or because you doubt yourself and your skills.
Procrastination can also result from
How To Challenge These Thoughts
During your worry period, challenge your negative thoughts by asking yourself:
- Whats the evidence that the thought is true? That its not true?
- Is there a more positive, realistic way of looking at the situation?
- Whats the probability that what Im scared of will actually happen? If the probability is low, what are some more likely outcomes?
- Is the thought helpful? How will worrying about it help me and how will it hurt me?
- What would I say to a friend who had this worry?
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Healthy Ways To Handle Lifes Stressors
When stress becomes unmanageable, try these evidence-based tools to tackle it in healthy ways.
Healthy ways to handle lifes stressors.
Stressful experiences are a normal part of life, and the is a survival mechanism that primes us to respond to threats. Some stress is positive: Imagine standing in front of a crowd to give a speech and hitting it out of the park. Stressful? Certainly. But also challenging and satisfying.
But when a stressor is negative and cant be fought off or avoided such as layoffs at work or a loved ones medical crisis or when the experience of stress becomes , our biological responses to stress can impair our physical and mental health.
Fortunately, there are many evidence-based tools to help combat the negative effects of stress in healthy ways. They recommend that you:
Develop Techniques That Will Help You To Feel In Control Of Your Life
There is plenty of research that suggests that the single factor that causes most stress is feeling out of control.
One way that you can help yourself to avoid stress is to develop techniques to help you solve problems and make decisions more easily.
For example, one problem-solving technique involves writing down the problem and coming up with as many possible solutions as you can. Decide on the good and bad points of each one and select the best solution. Write down each step that you need to take as part of the solution: what will be done, how will it be done, when will it be done, who is involved and where will it take place.
There is more about this and other techniques in our series of pages on Problem-Solving and Decision-Making.
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Accept That Anger Is Normal Listen To What Its Telling You
Emotions arent really good or bad. Its normal and healthy to experience the full range of emotions.
But if youve struggled with anger/irritability problems it can feel like anger is a bad thing, especially if its made you do/say things you regret.
But there is a place for anger in the emotional spectrum.
As there is a place for happiness, sadness, and everything else.
Plus, anger can be helpful. Most, if not all, of the social progress made wouldnt have been possible without anger. But then again, anger can also be used as a tool of oppression . Point here being that emotions arent inherently good or bad.
The problem then is when you become flooded with anger and lose sight of whats important to you. Because when that happens, all thats important is whatever is going to satisfy your anger. This is the anger spiral.
When youre in it, its hard to see any way out of it. But it is possible. You just have to remember your commitment and whats important to you.
Maybe there is some phrase that serves as a concrete reminder of your priorities, which makes you snap out of the anger spiral long enough to talk yourself down and do some introspection.
For me, this was no matter what, but for you maybe itll be something different. The idea is, dont just swallow your anger and try and suppress it. Its only going to boil over later. Instead, listen to what your anger is telling you.
What emotional need ist being met? What things make you angry?
Time Management Tips For Reducing Job Stress
Create a balanced schedule. All work and no play is a recipe for burnout. Try to find a balance between work and family life, social activities and solitary pursuits, daily responsibilities and downtime.
Leave earlier in the morning. Even 10-15 minutes can make the difference between frantically rushing and having time to ease into your day. If youre always running late, set your clocks and watches fast to give yourself extra time and decrease your stress levels.
Plan regular breaks. Make sure to take short breaks throughout the day to take a walk, chat with a friendly face, or practice a relaxation technique. Also try to get away from your desk or work station for lunch. It will help you relax and recharge and be more, not less, productive.
Establish healthy boundaries. Many of us feel pressured to be available 24 hours a day or obliged to keep checking our smartphones for work-related messages and updates. But its important to maintain periods where youre not working or thinking about work. That may mean not checking emails or taking work calls at home in the evening or at weekends.
Dont over-commit yourself. Avoid scheduling things back-to-back or trying to fit too much into one day. If youve got too much on your plate, distinguish between the shoulds and the musts. Drop tasks that arent truly necessary to the bottom of the list or eliminate them entirely.
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Staying Busy Is Your Antidepressant
Many people are either afraid or unwilling to address the true causes of their suffering and unhappiness.
This is partly because its not always clear. Depression, for instance, has many partial and interactive causes, from genetic vulnerabilities and inflammatory autoimmune responses to ruminative thinking styles and social stressors. So it can be understandably hard to completely understand all the causes and contributors to your suffering.
But for many of us, despite this complexity, there are at least some reasonably clear causes of unhappiness that we could work to improve:
- Nearly everyone with depression or anxiety would benefit from more regular exercise.
- Most people with low self-esteem and self-worth issues would benefit from working to improve their habits of negative self-talk.
- Almost anyone who struggles to regulate their emotions would benefit from better sleep habits.
- Many of those who struggle with unresolved grief could benefit from talking to a counselor or therapist.
- Nearly everyone with anger issues would benefit from a regular mindfulness practice.
The point is, there are usually plenty of reasonable ways to address the underlying causes of our suffering. The problem is, theyre hard:
So I get it. There are real challenges.
But its how we respond to these challenges that matter. For many people, the challenges of addressing core causes feels like too much. And so they resort to coping mechanisms and treating the symptoms:
Stop Putting Off Exercise
Exercise can help you to feel less stressed in the short run and build your resilience toward stress in the long run. Many people know this but have a difficult time getting off the couch on a regular basis, especially when stressed, or too busy to get onto the couch in the first place.
It’s ironic that sometimes when we would most benefit from exercise, that’s the last thing we want to do. Push yourself to do it!
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Reasons You Are Stressed About Nothing
Stress and anxiety are regular occurrences in our day-to-day lives. It can feel as though we are consumed by it. Stress occurs when one feels overwhelmed or cannot cope with a variety of pressures. Usually, these things all add up and feel unmanageable, causing stress. It is safe to say that we all feel stress at one time or another. But sometimes, it can feel like we are stressed about nothing, with no apparent reason to justify such an overwhelming emotion.
While it may feel as though you are stressed for no reason, stress is triggered. These triggers are internal and external stimuli that cause feelings of anxiety. You may not even be aware of some of these stressors and how they are affecting you, leaving you feeling like you are stressed for no reason. There is always a reason for your feelings of stress.
There are many ways stress can manifest itself. You are probably noticing that youre experiencing stress while not entirely sure of its root cause. You may be experiencing emotional changes due to increased stress levels, such as anxiety, depression, sadness, and frustration.
Be Proactive About Your Job And Your Workplace Duties
When we feel uncertain, helpless, or out of control, our stress levels are the highest. Here are some things you can do to regain a sense of control over your job and career.
Talk to your employer about workplace stressors. Healthy and happy employees are more productive, so your employer has an incentive to tackle workplace stress whenever possible. Rather than rattling off a list of complaints, let your employer know about specific conditions that are impacting your work performance.
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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.
Your Left Brain Is Hijacked
Activation arises from our reptilian brain. High activation translates into the fact that the nervous system is on alert, in “survival mode”. Less essential tasks like reading are relegated a low priority.
What’s important to understand is that high activation essentially means that our left brain gets hijacked by the right brain. In other words high activation in the nervous system means we will be compromised our ability to think clearly. This means a good chunk of your brain will be fighting you on your desire to read.
Our thinking skills suffer when the more primitive, reptilian brain is dominant which is when our activation is running too high. In fact, some people with chronic high activation just stop reading altogether!
They probably didn’t note their activation or their waning lack of interest losing the fun of reading is a slow process that usually happens over a long period of time.
Most people–if they pause to think about it–attribute their flagging interest in reading as the result of having other priorities. Some will attribute it to getting older.
Even a love of books cannot overcome their resistance. I know…because this is exactly how it was for me.
I’d buy a book I just couldn’t wait to read. I’d bring it home intending to get to it soon, but “soon” just seemed to slip away. And there they’d sit, all my great buys from months back piled nicely in the corner waiting for just the right moment.
Of course, that moment rarely came.
Why picture books?
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Task Management Tips For Reducing Job Stress
Prioritize tasks. Tackle high-priority tasks first. If you have something particularly unpleasant to do, get it over with early. The rest of your day will be more pleasant as a result.
Break projects into small steps. If a large project seems overwhelming, focus on one manageable step at a time, rather than taking on everything at once.
Delegate responsibility. You dont have to do it all yourself. Let go of the desire to control every little step. Youll be letting go of unnecessary stress in the process.
Be willing to compromise. Sometimes, if you and a co-worker or boss can both adjust your expectations a little, youll be able to find a happy middle ground that reduces the stress levels for everyone.
Are There Preventive Measures That May Help To Stop Anxiety Twitching
One way you can help prevent anxiety twitching is to help prevent anxiety in the first place.
Other preventive measures prevent the twitching itself, while some measures help prevent both anxiety and twitching more generally.
To help stop anxiety twitching:
- Eat a healthy diet. Having the right amount of salt and micronutrients makes your muscles less likely to twitch. A healthy diet can also help reduce anxiety.
- Get 7 to 8 hours of sleep per night.
- Avoid energy drinks or caffeine. They can make both twitching and anxiety worse.
- Get regular exercise. It helps reduce anxiety and tones your muscles, which makes them less likely to twitch.
- Drink water. Dehydration can lead to mild anxiety and make muscles twitch.
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Breathing And Relaxation Exercises
Many people find exercises that focus on breathing and muscle relaxation to be helpful in relieving stress. The playlist below will help you to understand how stress works and start feeling better. These exercises can be done anywhere and are designed to help you feel more relaxed in general, as well as helping you feel calmer if you are becoming stressed.
This playlist is free to download, and you can also stream it using the Soundcloud website or app. You can download and listen to individual tracks if there are particular exercises that work best for you. If you’re listening to it for the first time, it’s best to start from the beginning.
To access a BSL version of this playlist, .
Find out more by checking out these 10 stress busters.