Ahh…good ole’ stress. Who doesn’t love a nice anxiety attack? Wait, no one. Wouldn’t it be great to never be stressed again? Is it even possible? It is and that’s exactly what I am going to show you how to do!
We all experience stress; in fact, some stress is actually good for us. Moderate exercise, a healthy diet and sun light are all forms of healthy stress. The keys to a stress-free life are balance and perception.
There are many types of stress; physical, chemical, mental, thermal, electromagnetic and nutritional. When we think about being “stressed-out” typically, we are referring to mental stress. We are pretty good at managing the other day-to-day stressors. When it’s hot, we cool down, when it’s sunny we get in the shade, and we’re even getting relatively good at eating well and exercising. In all of my years as a health coach, it is safe to say the biggest stress we experience is mental stress.
The good news is that dealing with stress is as simple as “getting out of the sun and into the shade.” All we have to do is learn to recognize when we are in the “heat” and then find that shady place of inner-peace we all carry.
Below I’ve put together a few simple, yet effective strategies for ridding ourselves of the burden of being “stressed”.
- Change the way you speak- There is a difference between feeling stress and beingstressed. Our words are powerful and we don’t recognize how much the communication to ourselves creates our perception. Most of the time; when under stress, we become identified with it. We tell communicate — “I am…stressed” — to the ourselves and the world. You would be amazed at how far a simple shift in your dialog can make. I suggest trading out the word “stress” or “stressed” for something lighter instead. Use words like; flustered, annoyed, concerned, curious, or better yet interested. It’s much easier to deal with and figure out what your annoyed with than stressed by. When we’re stressed it’s usually because something in life doesn’t match our perception. Instead of condemning it, become interested; you’ll drop the negative bio-chemical reaction and tension – heck, you might even learn something!
- Give up lying- I have a belief that lying is one of the major sources of all stress. Most lying comes from withholding — we’re afraid of hurting others — when really we’re more afraid we won’t be able to handle their reaction. By withholding we end up creating some serious turmoil within ourselves. What happens is we end up constantly on edge; afraid if we’re going to be found out. This creates incredible uneasiness and usually makes situations worse. When things go haywire at work or in a relationship we get stressed. We then add more stress by leaving things unsaid; unspoken resentments, fears, concerns – usually the things that started the stress — then build up. When we’re constantly trying to guard our word and not be “found out” we create walls between others that block out love. Love is the alchemical force that heals all stress; so we definitely don’t want to stop its flow. I encourage you practice “Radical Honesty” a term coined by Brad Blanton, Ph. D. Instead of suppressing thoughts with lies. allow others into your world by expressing them; leaving them open for dissection. It creates intimacy and frees you of the burden of private judgment.
- Come back to your senses- Mental and emotional stress is a self-created illusion of the mind. One of the simplest ways to never being stressed against is to simply not partake it in. Once you realize for yourself that mental stress is completely unnecessary the more quickly you “lose your mindand come back to your senses” as Fredrick Perls states. Simply drop the whole internal conversation causing the stress. You know the one saying “ your life sucks, this traffic sucks, no one cares about you, your job isn’t good enough and life’s coming to an end”. You don’t have to play that game, you can watch it and simply laugh or you can get back into your body. Pay attention to the way stress thoughts make you feel. Are you breathing shallow, feeling tightness in your throat, are you slouched over, head hanging low, or heart racing? Watch these things, just observe the with interest or even with joy; they are signs you are alive! Then, override the mind; breathe deeply, sing, scream, stretch your body up tall, and put a smile on your face. Just as your mental activity creates a change in our physiology, you can do the same to your mind by changing your body. This is reverse cause and effect; become the effect and the “cause” will change. Smile and your mind will have to think of something to smile about.