April is Stress Awareness month and today is National Reduce Stress Day.
So, let’s talk about the stressors in our daily lives and what we can do about them.
As you probably know, there are two types of stress. There’s the good kind of stress, called eustress, which you feel during positive moments, such as when you’re looking forward to a special vacation or to getting together with friends and family. The anticipation and excitement is stressful, but in a good way—a way that motivates you to move toward the happy event.
Dis-stress, the bad kind of stress, is the culprit that causes high blood pressure, anxiety and depression, among other things. It can be a contributing factor in people’s bad behavior and poor choices. Distress can be caused by commuting in bumper-to-bumper traffic, having too much on your plate, not taking time to recharge, and the like.
Even if your life is ideal, day-to-day living has, inherently, a certain level of stress. It’s unrealistic to think we can get rid of every last little bit of it. The more effective and helpful tack to consider is figuring out how to eliminate the unnecessary stress and then learn techniques for managing the stress that you do have.
Your homework today is in four parts. The first is to eliminate unnecessary stressors: say “no” to projects that aren’t your responsibility and ones that do not interest you; delegate or ask for help on your obligations and responsibilities; and to not create drama and be sure to walk away from others’ dramas.
The second part of your homework is to lessen the impact of stress in your life. For instance if you commute in traffic, instead of taking the highway, perhaps it might be less stressful and more enjoyable to take the back roads. Think of other, less stressful, ways to do the things that must be done.
Third, come up with ways to regularly release the stress that builds up. Yoga, meditation, exercise, spending time with people whose company you enjoy, pursuing your hobbies, people watching, nature walks, and listening to uplifting music are a few suggestions. Also, sometimes taking a moment to breathe deep and remind yourself that this, too, shall pass can keep things in perspective and be beneficial in releasing stress.
Finally, put your thinking cap on and make a list of ways you can eliminate and reduce stress in your life, and note the stress-releasing methods that work for you. Refer to this list often!
You can do it, I know you can!
What do you do to release stress? Post in the comments section!
I’m so proud of you!
Your Friend and Pep Pal,