Stressed? Yes, me too. We all suffer from the S word at sometime in our life and the modern world that goes on 24/7 just results in added pressure that none of us really need. I’d never say generations before us didn’t have stress but it was a different stress. We have the internet that brings so much information and images in to out lives and all too often very ‘perfect’ images that when the surface is scratched are anything but perfect. Nobodies life is perfect yet the press and social media make us feel like we muct have perfect lives or we are nothing more than a failure.
One important thing we should remember is that not all stress is ‘bad stress’. We need to allow our caveman instinct to surface and to have fear/stress to protect us from danger and to also warn us when to step back and crank up the self-care dial.
This is what helps me when stress hits:
Spending Time Alone
This has to be my first go to coping strateg when I am getting stressed. I know some people see it as shutting others out but I have to get my own head around a situation before I can reach out to others. If it means I sit and cry, that’s fine. If I scream, that’s fine. It’s also fine to slam the door a few times. What isn’t ok is if you keep people out permenetly. That will never achieve anything.
Once I have actually processed the ’cause of the stress’ I know that what I need to do is speak to other people about things. I’ve learnt from experience that it’s not good to bottle things up and try to cope on your own or just try to ignore what is happening. Sadly, things don’t usually go away if you ignore them and the sooner you face things head on the easier things will be. Don’t ever think that you need to do this alone. Remember, a problem shared is a problem halved and storing up stress is not the answer. It’s the worst thing you can do in fact. Chat to those you trust, your partner, friends, family and/or professionals for mental, physical and practical support.
It is beneficial to release the tears, reach out to others and ask others for advice and guidence. Accept what you cannot change and change your mindset about this issues but also choose to tackle the issues you can change head on and find positivity in life.
Regardless of what people may have said self care is really essential and is in no way selfish. We all need to take time out from the madness that we call life and take a step back and simplfy things. It doessn’t need to be anything elaborate, just simply sitting down in your favourite part of the house and sitting their drinking your morning tea (well and coffee if you must!) while the cup is still warm. I know I am so guilty of this, rushing around and by the time I come to take the third sip of tea it’s stone cold!
If you are looking for a self care challenge to motivate you to find time to take a step back and do somethingfor youI have a 5 day chllenge that can be found here.
One of the most important things you an do for yourself right now is stop making excuses and start making time for self care each day and continue to make it part of your daily routine.
Moving Out Of my Comfort Zone
Whilst this can initially feel scary and possibly cause more stress at first I often find by taking up a new challenge and concentrating on that can ease stressful times. By giving myself something more positive to focus on and giving me a challenge that I can change my mindset about what was stressing me. The release of endorphins by tackling a new adventure can help so much and give you that much needed boost that I had been lacking.
I’ll be honest I’ve not always been the meditating type. For so long I just believed it was all mumbo jumbo and would never help me. But last year I was forced to put me first and was recommened some simple meditation techniques. I’m certainly not going to claim there made any stress go away but by sitting down, clearing my mind and concentrate on simply breathing I found the stress was eased. By simply taking a step back a couple of times a day things became clearer and the anxiety of what was happening in my life greatly eased.
Meditating gave me the chance to take a sideward step away from the issues and I felt so much more powerful regarding how I could tackle things and move forward. There are so many free apps available that I really recommend dowmloading one and giving meditation a go for a few days.
This is far easier said than done with right? But sleeping, even if that means I am taking naps during the day or forcing myself to go to bed earlier, will always be an anti-stress tonic for me. It is so clear why sleep depravation has been used as a form of tourture as you body just doesn’t get the chance to rest andrepair itself.
If your stress is feeling unmanageable and overwhelming then it is always best do see your GP as stress can affect us physically as well and their is nothing wrong in asking for a little help. It is never healthy to shut yourself away from people for long periods of time. If you feel you are doing this or using inappropriate things as a crutch please go and make an appointment with your GP or speak to someone, be it a friend or calling a helpline. Don’t ever sit there is silence all alone.