Stress Management, A Work In Progress

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Effective Stress Management Doesn’t Usually Happen Overnight, But There Are Many Things You Can Add To Your Arsenal

Stress Management, A Work In ProgressIf you have a lot of stress in your life, you need an effective stress management plan.  For many of us, it truly is a work in progress.  Some things we can do right away to prevent stress from building in a particular situation.  Overall though, we need an effective stress management strategy to keep stress at a manageable level.

Have you adopted all these foundational tips?  

  • Time for yourself when you can relax.
  • Using some deep breaths to diffuse feelings of stress in the moment.
  • Exercise.
  • Healthy nutritious diet
  • Adequate sleep.
  • Finding or putting laughter in your day.

If you have all these things in place, but are still feeling overwhelmed, you might try the Helpguide’s free online 5-step program.  It may be able to help you relieve stress and replace old emotional habits with healthier ways of thinking, feeling, behaving, and relating to others.

More Stress Management Methods You Can Incorporate Into Your Overall Plan 

Sometimes in an immediate stressful situation, redirecting yourself away from the stress can help.  This can be putting on your favorite song, looking at a funny photo, spending a few moments having fun with your pet, etc.  Something you enjoy that you can redirect your focus on.  It involves your senses, sight, hearing, smell, taste or touch.  You can experiment with these things and find out what works best for you.

The Silly Phrase Technique

Another technique that is kind of fun, is to think of a silly phrase that maybe even doesn’t make sense.  For example,  “jumping lizards, my feet don’t stink.”  Whatever might be fun and silly for you.  Then when stressed, and probably when you are alone, say it with a funny voice and a smile.   Maybe jump as you say it or raise your arms.   Sound weird, I know, but it can snap you out of a stressful focus.

Talking or Journaling

Talking with someone you respect can help.  For some people, using a journal is more helpful. There you can express yourself however it needs to come out.  You can use it like you are talking with someone or you can journal events, your feelings toward them, but remember to also jot down ways you are going to positively handle the stress or stressful situation.  Journaling can be a helpful tool in not letting things build up, but you also need to be careful not to make it so negative that it adds to stress.

Don’t Let Your Plate Get Too Full

If you are doing things you don’t want to do, this can eventually lead to stress overload.  If there are things you don’t have to do, don’t feel pressured to continue to do them.  Sometimes we take on too much and simply cutting back can help a great deal.

Realistic Goals

Be sure to have realistic goals for yourself.  Feel good about who you are and what you can accomplish.

Time To Unwind

We mentioned it before, but you need time to just unwind.  Even taking just a few minutes each day to do something that helps you relax.  Watching a comedy show, playing with your pet or maybe listening to music …

Be Nice To Yourself

Talk to yourself nicely.  Oftentimes we badger ourselves to do better.  Be conscious about what words you are using.  Are they positive, uplifting and motivating words?  Same with picturing how you want things.  Don’t spend time going over in your mind all the bad stuff.  Focus, as much as possible, on whatever good you can muster up.

Successful Rehearsals

Use your imagination and picture how you can manage a stressful situation more successfully. Go over it in your mind just how wonderful you are going to handle it.  Whether it’s a business presentation or just how you handle people or things that are stressful.  Your brain is a powerful thing and rehearsing set patterns into motion.  Make sure what you are rehearsing is positive.  This can help give you more confidence and enable you to have a more positive outcome to a difficult task.

Exercise, Of Course

Exercise was mentioned earlier, but it is proven to be an excellent stress reducer, as well as having other benefits.  It doesn’t even have to be a lot, maybe 15-30 minutes a day.  Sometimes easy stretching can help too.

Scheduling Fun

Find something you enjoy doing and put it in the schedule somewhere, even if it is just a hour a week at first.

Procrastinate No More

As much as possible, when things come up, deal with them right away.  Don’t let them fester.  This can help prevent some of the accumulative stress we have in our daily lives.

Healthy Lifestyle

A healthy lifestyle is critical for the foundation of good health and your ability to handle stress.  Eating healthy and getting exercise is part of it, but it is also not smoking, not drinking too much alcohol and keeping caffeine to a minimum.  These all can help you sleep better.  Also, part of a healthy lifestyle is putting some laughter into your day or at the very least a smile somewhere.    The more the better.

Natural Herbal Help or See Your Doctor

If these tips just aren’t enough and you feel anxious or depressed, you may want to talk with your doctor about some temporary medication.  You might want to try some natural alternatives first though, such as Valerian, Ashwagandha or even Melatonin if you are not getting adequate sleep.

Making Light Of Stress Management Techniques

Effective Stress Management For A Lifetime

For many, excessive stress may be present for a while, but working and improving these stress management areas can increase your ability to not only cope with the stress in your life, but bring back some quality to your life, even despite of the stress.

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