Whether it is stress from personal or work life, it can really impact my wellbeing and performance. When I am under stress, I make more mistakes than I do when I am not stressed. My mind tends to wander to the issues that are causing me stress. Stress can consume me, paralyzes my mind, and have physical impacts. Stress has caused me to have an ulcer and even lose my hair in the past.
I am so grateful for TriYoung, Inc. for offering free professional development training resource with certificates on any topic we choose. TriYoung also gives us 2 paid hours per month for training. I recently completed a couple of courses to learn how to manage my stress and learned so much. I am not a professional on stress management and write from my personal experience. I wanted to share what helped me alleviate my stress in hopes it will help others.
The first thing I now do when something is stressing me out is identify what the true source of the stress is. For example, I may think I am stressed out about so many things happening at once, but they could have a common source that could be completely unrelated when I sit back and think about it. I then ask myself, “Is the reasons for my stressors within my control?” Most of the time, the things that I am worried or stressed out about are completely out of our control. I am only hurting myself by stressing on something I cannot control. If it is not within my control, I make peace with the fact that it is outside of my control and let it go. Letting it go may need to happen hourly, daily, or whenever it creeps up on me again. If the stressor is within my control, I write down and make a realistic daily plan to work towards alleviating the source of that stress.
I have also learned not to worry about things in the distant future and stress about something that is imagined or not real. A future issue I am stressing about has not happened yet and me thinking about the worst-case scenario is not healthy or productive. I learned to consciously change my thoughts and imagine everything going perfectly. I have found taking “one day at a time” is the best way to concur the stressor.
I also learned that multitasking causes stress. I used to pride myself with the ability to multitask but realized it really was not effective or efficient and caused undue anxiety. When I work on one thing at a time, it allows me to focus on the task at hand and complete it quicker. Don’t get me wrong, I still multitask sometimes but not if I can help it. The scheduling of my tasks and focusing on the task on schedule for today has really helped me become more efficient.
One of my favorite tools I now use to combat unavoidable stress is “deep breathing”. When I am stressed, I take a deep breath into my nose for 5 seconds and blow out my mouth for 5 seconds. I repeat it until I feel my blood pressure slowing back down. If the breathing does not work, I get up and go for a walk.
I can honestly say that practicing the above has improved my anxiety, my gut health, helped me not worry about the unknown and I am more efficient. My advice is do not forget to breathe, take one day at a time, and celebrate each victory over stress.
I hope what worked for me helps you reduce your stress too.