How to manage stress
There’s no way you can stop the bills from coming, your family responsibilities and that of your career will always be demanding. Many times, you’ll feel that there’s no more hours in a day. For these reasons, it might seems impossible for you to do something about managing stress. But the fact still remains that you have full control over yourself than what you think. To be sincere, the foundation to managing stress is to realize that you have the full control over yourself. Managing stress entails taking the control of your thought, temperament, schedule and the way you handle some task.
What are the sources of stress in your life?
The first step in managing stress is to identify the source of the stress in your life. You might think this is easy to ascertain, but in reality, it is not. The main source of stress in your life are not as clear as you might think of. Moreover, it very easy for you to neglect the thoughts, behaviors, and feeling that brought about stress. Certainly, you might find yourself being disturbed about your work deadlines; this might not actually be the demand of your career that results to the stress, rather your procrastination.
You will need to take a close look at your behaviors, explains and attitude before you can be able to recognize your exact source of stress.
Examine yourself with the following questions below:
1. Are you always found of saying “I have thousands of things going on my mind right now?” even when you cannot actually recall the last time you took a deep breathe?
2. Do you describe stress as an essential part of your life or career or as part of your temperament?
3. When you are stressed up, do you see it as a normal way of life, extraordinary, or you put the blame on other people?
You will not be able to control the level of your stress if you don’t accept the responsibilities that you created the stress and that you’ll have to manage it.
keeping a stress journal
By keeping a stress journal, you can easily detects stress agents in your life as well as deal with them in a better way. Whenever you are stressed up, put it down in your journal. You will start to see patterns and common themes as you are keeping the records of your stress day.
Follow the below format in keeping your stress journal:
1. What are the factors that caused your stress? If you not specific, you can guess.
2. How is your feeling, physically and emotionally?
3. How to respond to some actions?
4. What did you do to relieve yourself?
Watch how you manage stress.
With the help of your journal, you can identify the ways you manage stress. Meditate on these methods you use to manage the stress. In addition, determine if your methods of managing stress are healthy or not, are they effective or not. Many people manage stress in an inappropriate ways that even make the issue to be more complicated.
Insalubrious ways of managing stress
Managing of stress using the following means will only reduce the level of the stress temporarily. In the long run, they cause more damage. They include;
- Isolation from families, friends and some activities.
- Using drugs and pills
- Excessive watching of TV or Computer
- Blaming others for your stress.
More salubrious ways to manage stress
You will know it is time for you to find another means of managing stress if your present methods are deleterious to your physical and emotional well – being. There are several methods of managing stress but they all demand change. It either you modify your reaction or the circumstances. You should keep in mind the four A’s (avoid, accept, alter and adapt) when determining to choose which method to use.
There is no sole method of managing stress. This is because individuals respond to stress in different and in a unique way. The method that works for you might not work for another individual. So, try different methods and choose the one that work best for you. Concentrate on what makes you feel relieved.
Handling stressful circumstances:
Change of reaction
- Alter the stress agent
- Avoid the stress agent
Change of Situation
- Adapt to the stress agent
- Accept the stress agent.
Strategies of managing stress
1.AVOID AVOIDABLE STRESS: It is not intelligent to avoid a situation that needs your attention. Though you might not be able to avert all stress, but you will be astonished at the countless number of stress agents that you can get rid of.
- Know your boundaries and adhere to them. Learn to say “no”. Taking more than the responsibilities you can manage will surely bring about stress.
- Avoid someone that constantly cause stress in your life. If you find it difficult to make the relationship turn around, cut down the numbers of hours you spend with such person or you terminate the relationship.
- You have the full control of your environment. If there’s anything that upset you in the environment, get rid of it. If it’s the traffic that usually upset you, take a longer but less congested route. Just exercise your authority over your environment.
- Are you easily upset by political or religious topics? You can rule them out of your chatting schedule. If you are found of arguing on the same topic over and over with your friends, stop bringing up the topic again. Perhaps, you can excuse yourself when the topic is raised again.
- Schedule and organize your responsibilities based on their priorities. If you’ve got too many task to attend to, then you will need to different between that compulsory and optional tasks. If possible, eliminate the unnecessary task.
2.AVOID THE SITUATION: The best thing to do if you cannot avoid a stressful circumstances is to alter or change it. Think about the things you can do in order to prevent future occurrence of the situation again. Most times it usually involves changing your communication styles and the way you do things.
- Shared problem is half solved. Rather than keeping the situation to yourself, you can express your feelings to your friends in a polite manner. Keeping your feelings with yourself will only result to build up of resentment and probably, the state of the situation will get worse.
- Be willing to modify your behaviors, just as you are asking others to do so. There’s probability of being happy with yourself if only you are willing to bend your behaviors a bit.
- Rather than dodging a problem, face it head on. You don’t overcome by dodging but by fighting. Give in your best to prepare ahead in case you have an exam. You know, that’s not going to be the best time to start chatting.
- When you are running out of time for a particular task, it hard for you to focus. This makes poor time management to bring about stress. The best way to handle this kind of situation is to plan your time ahead and do not overuse yourself.
3.ADAPT TO STRESSOR: At least, if you can change the cause of the stress, you can change yourself to be adapt to the stress. It is possible to regain your sense of control if you alter your attitude and expectations.
- Endeavor to perceive positive things in stressful circumstances. Rather than you complaining about the traffic jam, see it as an opportunity to listen to your preferred radio station, relax and enjoy yourself.
- Think about the future instead of focusing on the present situation that get you upset. If the present stressful situation you’re are passing through is not going to profit you, then shift your mind and focus you energy on something that is worthwhile.
- Trying to be perfect in everything is another source of stress and it is avoidable. You can avoid stress from this by lowering your standard and stop demanding for perfection. Set reasonable and achievable standards for yourself and learn to be satisfied with the result you get.
- Many times, taking time to reminisce your awesome past experience can relieve you of stress. Also think about the things you cherish in your environment or about yourself. Perhaps it can be your favorite movie, focus on it.
Regulate your attitude
Your physical well – being as well as your emotional balance can be affected by the way you think. Whenever you think about yourself in a negative way, your body will be strained. But thinking some positive about yourself will bring your body back to live. Therefore, eradicate words like “should”, “must”, “always” and “never” from your conversation.
4.ACCEPT THE THINGS YOU CANNOT ALTER: There are some stress agents that you cannot do without. No matter how you try to avoid them, you will surely encounter them. For instances, you cannot keep your loved one from dying, neither can you defend a serious sickness. In such situations, you have to accept things as they are. Though it might be difficult in the first place.
After all, it is better than criticizing yourself against situations you cannot change.
- There are many things that you cannot control. Example is the behavior of other people. Instead of complaining about how one person behaves, you should concentrate on how to react to such kind of issues.
- Every disappointment, as it is being said, is a blessing. Every challenges that comes your way is not to mar you, but to build you up. Therefore, see every challenges as opportunities to for your personal development. Learn from your mistakes.