We live in a stressed out world. Demands, expectations, money problems, health issues, conflicts at work—it can all add up to feeling overwhelmed and constantly under pressure. So how do you manage all the stress in your daily life?
Try some of these simple tips and give yourself a break!
- Set limits. Stress often occurs as a result of taking on too many tasks or trying to do too many things at a time. Get comfortable saying, “no,” and recognize that there are and should be limits to what you allow yourself to focus on daily.
- Keep a balanced perspective. When stressed, we tend to focus only on negative things. How often have you heard, “Why did such a terrible thing happen to me?” It’s easy to forget that many unexplained good things happen to us too. It’s just that we don’t normally hear people talk about those. Really, when is the last time you heard someone say, “Why do I keep getting hammered with so many blessings?”
- Focus on what you can control. The fastest way to feel totally overwhelmed is to dwell on things you can do nothing about. Quickly bring your focus back to the things that you can control, even small things, and you will soon feel a sense of order and calm replacing those feelings of stress and chaos.
- Exercise. It’s free, it doesn’t take long, and it’s good for your mind and body. Look at the way your body is designed with its curves and hinges – you were designed to bend and move!
- Have a sense of humor. If you can find humor in a situation, somehow it makes it feel more manageable and less threatening. Sure, life has plenty of serious times, but often we create undue stress by taking ourselves too seriously all the time.
Dorian Leigh Quillen, M.Ed., LPC (firstname.lastname@example.org), is a licensed professional counselor and author specializing in life strategies and resilience. Her book, “Class Act—Eight Young People Who Turned Tragedy into Triumph,” is available at www.amazon.com.