Have you ever noticed that the very things you love in your life can also be the most stressful? Relationships, work, career, family, friends, hobbies, health…you get the idea.
You cannot eliminate stress; you cannot “manage” it either. What it really comes down to is managing YOU. It’s more about how can we have more strategies and coping skills in order to keep the stress at a manageable level (whatever that is for YOU!).
We know that in order to function at an optimal level that we need stress in our lives. It’s flame sparks creativity, energy, and performance. The key is when is it too much and how are we perceiving it?
If you remember in my last posts, I talked about working out and building your resiliency muscles. This is a core ingredient in keeping a comfortable grip on your stress levels. So how do you do it? Below are some pointers for keeping your stress at a simmer rather than a boil!
- Stop being overly critical of yourself. Yes, uncover and do away with the excuses, but it’s also important to cut yourself some slack (again refer to my Falling Off the Wagon post!)
- Give yourself a 5 minute timeout. Take just 5 minutes to breathe, acknowledge the “voices” in your head, then tell them to it give it a rest and move on.
- Take care of your physical self. If you know me at all, you know I’m a huge proponent of self-care. Not only in doing the things you enjoy, but this also means eating right, exercising, and of course, treating yourself to a little dark chocolate frequently!
- Take a break from the noise-we are constantly bombarded with cell phones ringing, text messages, emails, people vying for our attention electronically; make sure you have a “no zone” policy for taking a break.
- Can you say nap? I love naps! It may not always be possible, but whenever you can…grab a power nap. You’d be amazed how rejuvenating a 10-20 minute power nap can be. It’s also vital to figure out how many hours of sleep you need to function at your best.
Stay tuned for my next stress post where we’ll dig a bit deeper into what’s “eating you”!
What are your strategies for managing your energy around stress? Do you have tips you’d like to share?
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