It depends only on you whether tomorrow or a day after tomorrow you'll let yourself be under stress. This article will show you how to calm down and relax even when faced with the most stressful situations.
At the beginning take an interesting test.
Thanks to it, we will check the stress level in your life. The photo, to which the link is below, was used in the research on stress in some American hospital. Don't open it, till you've read this description. The photo depicts two identical dolphins. Research has shown, that even though the photo portrays completely identical dolphins, a person who gets stressed is going to find differences between them. The more differences an individual finds, the more stressful their life is.
And now click here and have a look at the photo. If you find one or two differences, it means that it's high time you worked on your stress level.
How was it? You probably smiled :) If so, then the photo fulfilled its role. And this is our number one in the article. The first way of dealing with stress.
Laughter releases tension and relaxes the whole organism. No one is able to smile genuinely and be stressed at the same time. Even artificial laugh leads to the release of hormones responsible for a general well-being. That is why smile as much as possible!
In a moment you'll get familiar with the other ways of coping with stress. I just want to add that in most cases stress is completely useless in our lives. It makes it hard for us to function in manifold situations - a job interview, constant life in a hurry, challenges that we're afraid to face. I used to get stressed myself quite often just two years ago. Sweaty hands, nervous dialogue in your head, muscle tension... I've got a good news - you can deal with it. I've managed to do it and now I almost don't remember what a real stress was.
It was not a long time ago that I realized the extent to which I had managed to reduce stress in my life. It was the evening time and I was driving through the city. Actually, I wasn't driving but awaiting in an enormous traffic jam. I was moving so slowly that I couldn't believe it. What's more, I was really late. But that's not all, there was someone in the middle of the crossroads who seemed to feel comfortable and not eager to move. Normally, I would have been unbelievably stressed out. I would have been honking my horn at everyone and swearing a lot. I wouldn't have been able to think rationally. However, it came to my mind then that whatever I did that traffic jam would not disappear. It's not in my power to change it. My irritation and anger wouldn't change ANYTING, so what was the point of getting angry? No matter whether I was going to get nervous or not, either way I would reach my destination at the same time. I switched on my favourite music and started to unwind in a car seat.
The ways of coping with stress I described below will similarly help you to get rid of stress from your own life:
2. Identify stress factors and eliminate them
Devote 10 minutes to think about what gets on your nerves during the day. Write down everything that comes to your mind. It can include people, activities, items, etc. Whatever that makes you feel stressed out. Now, by examining every single stress factor on its own, think whether you can eliminate it. If it's possible, get rid of it immediately. Think also what you can do to prevent some situations from taking place. I decided to choose routes where there are no traffic jams or to leave my place early enough to be always on time for my meetings.
3. Take responsibilty
If there are still some points left on your list and these include things that you can't get rid of then change your attitude. First and foremost, take responsibility for your stress. It's not these things that get on your nerves but it is you who becomes stressed with them! If you feel stressed out, it means that you let something stress you. You're completely responsible for it. Being stuck in that traffic jam I knew that my emotional state depends only on me and I decided that I wouldn't be so stupid as to let myself be stressed over something which I couldn't change. So keep in mind that if something stresses you, it's only you who lets it happen. You can change it, however, by taking responsibility for your emotional state.
Meditation and relaxation exercises are absolutely the best way to reduce the stress level in your life to the minimum in the long run. Practising such exercises three times a week for two months will make you resistant to stress. This point contributed the most to help me get rid of stress from my life. After some time I was completely calm at the moments when anyone else would get angry. It has been even scientifically confirmed that regular meditation and relaxation exercises significantly reduce the average cortisol level (stress hormone) in the organism. These exercises have many other advantages including the improvement of memory and concentration. You will find their accurate description in the article entitled "Practice relaxation".
5. Make good use of NLP techniques
Overcome negative thoughts. We very often get stressed even when we're not in a stressful situation. It happens so because we wind up ourselves - we talk to ourselves in a nervous manner, we have dark and unpleasant thoughts. Your thoughts are strictly intertwined with your soma which means that when you get stressed your all body stresses too. Muscles start to tighten up, forehead wrinkles and cortisol is being released. By changing your way of thinking you can overcome negative thoughts and change them into positive ones. Your body will respond to such thoughts through stress relief and relaxation.
6. Employ the worries vanquisher
It's the method by Brian Tracy described in his book "Maximum Achievement". It works the way that you firstly describe on a piece of paper as clearly as you can a situation which worries you. Next, you have to determine the worst case scenario of the this stressful situation. Very often determining the worst case scenario makes you worry less. The third step is to accept the worst possible result. Convince yourself that if it takes place you will accept it. This acceptance is the most important step. The last thing you have to do is to take immediate action which will help you avoid the worst case scenario. Give some thought to what you can do to minimize the losses and do it. Thanks to this technique stress disappears as if by magic.
7. Tidy up your surrounding.
No matter whether at home or at work mess can get on your nerves. We have no idea where our things are, we're looking for documents when we need them at once, we're losing the most important things. Even though we haven't lost anything, the very sight of mess leads to chaos in our heads. That is why, take care of tidiness and order. If you can see that your desk or cupboard requires it, put everything in its place. Arrange your working and living space. Your mind will find it easy then to wind up.
8. Take naps
The same as regular meditation naps lower the cortisol level in your organism.Stress frequently results from lack of sleep. You can make up for it by taking a 15 minute nap every day. What you should do to take as much from a nap as possible you'll read in future article.
9. Be involved in one thing at the moment.
I can remember that I used to multitask. I would type in some text, wrap something that was to be sent by mail, watch TV and be on the phone at the same time. Such a habit can be the cause of a lot of stress in your life. Thus, always be involved in one activity at the moment. Getting rid of stress in only one of many advantages of such an approach. When you're doing one thing at the moment, you devote it much more attention. Therefore, you'll do it quicker and better. When you do a few things simultaneously then not only will they take you more time, but also they won't be done as well as they could.
10. Engage in physical activity
It's a must if you often get stressed. Physical exercises will make you feel much, much better. During a physical activity your brain releases endorphins also known as happy hormones. Moreover, it contributes to your health. Keep in mind that diseases can also be a major source of stress, so an ounce of prevention is worth more than a pound of cure.
Even if you get stressed once for a while, I do recommend giving a try to one of the aforementioned tips. All of them help you feel better and turn stress into ease and stress relief. Staying relaxed and composed even in an extremely stressful situation is a great achievement and a great feeling. What is even more important, it lets you act effectively and helps you make use of all your inner resources. And maybe next time you will score higher on the test ;)
Which of these techniques do you like the most?