How To...Manage Stress Pt 2
How To…Manage Stress (In the Moment)
So last week we talked about managing stress but it was all big picture suggestions to maintain an overall low level of stress. But what about when you’re in the middle of a high stress situation such as an argument with your significant other, frustrated with your boss, parents driving you crazy, or simply overwhelmed with life? Well that’s what I want to discuss this week, how to manage your stress in the heat of the moment. Here are a few things that work for me!
1. Ask yourself “Is the stress worth it?”
When you realize you’re beginning to stress, pause for 2 seconds and truly ask yourself… “Is the stress worth it?” Often times I find myself naturally guiding into a stressed state and usually if I take a moment to reflect, it’s not that serious. You have to understand stress is not healthy! Stress has negative impacts on your mind, spirit, health, and cause unnecessary mental clutter.
Physically, stress can lead to headaches, fatigue AND insomnia (go figure), chest pain, and changes in sex drive. Stress can impact your mood by causing anxiety, irritability/anger, and depression. Stress can lead to overeating or under eating, drug/alcohol abuse, and social withdraw.
So I ask again. Is the stress worth it?
2. Listening to gospel music
For me listening to gospel music helps me keep the proper perspective in the middle of my patience being tested. Because I listen to gospel so regularly, I’ll find myself humming various songs that are JUST the motivation I need to get through that very moment. The words in most gospel songs are so uplifting that it’ll help me stay positive and upbeat even as the world around me is in complete mayhem.
If that’s not your thing, find what is! I also recommend 90s R&B because it’s relatively upbeat, mellows you out some, and gives nothing but good vibes! If you’re able to, turn on Pandora! There have been plenty of times where I’m stressed at work and I’ll go turn on music and get work done with a new vibe.
3. Venting to a trusted source
One point I’d like to make EXTREMELY clear: make sure the person you’re venting to can be trusted and will withhold their judgment. There is nothing worse than telling someone honest truths about how you feel and hearing it through the grape vine moments later. However, everyone needs to vent at times and it’s healthy to get things off your chest! Find someone who will listen without judgment and give you the space to find freedom.
4. Fix what you can, (mentally) let go of what you can’t!
Before you begin to stress or as soon as you realize you’re stressed evaluate why. Truly ask yourself if you have the ability to fix or control the situation, if not is it really worth stressing over? If you can fix it, then come up with a plan to rectify the situation. Find comfort in the resolution and trust the process knowing in proper timing, it will be resolved.
5. Walk away!
Sometimes the best thing you can do is just walk away! Take a moment to calm yourself before resolving the problem. It’s often best to just lowering your emotional reaction so that you can think clearly when resolving the issue. Minimizing the emotional reaction will allow you to objectively look at the facts and plan according to reality, not just how you feel. It’s taking a step back so you can more 5 steps forward!