10 Stress Management Tips
Topic: Life Lessons
1. Take the proactive approach: Stress can have a negative impact on your physical, mental and emotional health. You have a responsibility to yourself to maintain your well-being. Response-ability is the ability to choose your response. You may not have any control over the situation and you can’t change the way people behave but you do have complete control over the way you respond. Take the high road by readjusting your attitude toward more positive thinking.
2. Laughter is the best medicine: Laughter is a great way to relieve stress. You would be surprised at how much better you will feel after a great laugh. If the situation is one in which a good belly burst would be inappropriate at the time, you can simply smile. Both laughter and smiling provide a physical release of stress hormones such as cortisol, dopamine, adrenaline, epinephrine and the growth hormone.
3. Forgive: Forgiveness is a sister to taking the proactive approach. It is human nature to hold on to past hurts; however, by choosing to forgive the offender, you are actually releasing yourself from the stress associated with harboring grudges. It takes much more time and energy to obsess over someone who has wronged you than it does to just move on. Most likely he/she already has. Realize people are only human and we all make mistakes from time to time. That includes you so remember to also forgive yourself.
4. Take a purposeful pause: A purposeful pause is a break away from your daily tasks with a specific intention in mind for that time. The type of activity you choose to engage in during the “pause” is reliant on what you need at that time. If your intention is to relax, then your purposeful pause could be meditation, prayer or a bubble bath. If it is to reenergize, then the pause could be a nap or a coffee break. A purposeful pause can be as long as an hour or as short as 5 minutes. Try to work several purposeful pauses into your day.
5. Exercise: Physical activity relieves stress in a couple of ways. First, it offers a purposeful pause. Secondly, it promotes better health which in turn aids the body in its ability to handle stress. Take up yoga, join a gym or start walking.
6. Eat well: Having a balanced diet packed full of energizing nutrients aids in combating stress. Heart-healthy grains, fruits and veggies should be eaten regularly. Also, drink plenty of water. Steer clear of foods high in unhealthy fats, sugars and salt. Caffeine should also be avoided.
7. Tell the truth: Honesty really is the best possible. Lies, even small ones, can place terrible stress on the mind. It can be very difficult to keep up with lies and often more lies have to be told in order to maintain the initial one. Dishonesty also puts undue stress on great relationships.
8. Say NO: We often say “yes” to things we really don’t want to, either out of obligation or guilt. It really is okay to just say “no”. If a particular request takes you too far outside of your comfort zone then it is probably best to say no. It is also better to simply say no than to take on a task that you don’t have time for. You are much more productive when you only assume responsibility for those things that are important to you.
9. Plan: Time management skills are a great stress reduction tool. Write important things down, maintain a schedule and stick to it. Organize your files in a manner that makes them easily accessible and create a plan for routine maintenance. Don’t forget to schedule time for you. Add your purposeful pauses to your planner.
10. Delegate: You really can’t do it all by yourself much as you might think you can. Learn the unique talents and strengths of those within your circle of influence and use that knowledge to share your tasks. Doing less is quite often doing more.
© Copyright 2008 by Niquenya D. Fulbright - All rights reserved.
About the Author:
Niquenya D. Fulbright is a certified Christian executive life coach, management consultant, certified mediator, corporate trainer and motivational speaker specializing in inspiring small business owners, nonprofit leadership, entrepreneurs, executives, groups and individuals in a career or life transition to use their innate abilities to master their goals and achieve successes beyond their wildest dreams. http://www.niquenyafulbright.com/