Stress Management Skills
Unlock the secrets and gain control!
Stress is everywhere! It hits us all at some point in time. Stress is defined as any stimulus–physical, mental or emotional–that disturbs or interferes with normal physiological equilibrium. In other words, it throws us off balance.
Individuals who know how to control their stress are apt to have more enthusiasm, work smarter and be more productive. It is important for all of us to learn how to manage stress in order to feel and work better.
Here are 10 keys that will help you control undue stress and correct the imbalances of life.
- Eat right, eat light. Most people know when and what to eat. However, the trick is to eat what is good for the body to maintain an even keel. Simple solution: don’t eat anything that comes wrapped in cellophane!
- Break the vices. Keep the workplace a healthful environment by establishing a positive lifestyle. Alcohol fogs the mind; tobacco saps endurance; refined sugar lifts you up and slams you down.
- Does the shoe fit? There are all kinds of people and all kinds of organizations. It is critical to find the right fit. Tip: Look around the office. Do you like the pace of the work? Do you like the people? Do you agree with their values? The right fit is essential in the workplace.
- Indulge in guilt-free leisure. The next time you are feeling overwhelmed by stress, go to the movies and get into somebody else’s drama. Laugh. Enjoy the entertainment.
- Take a walk. A walk is one of the most effective stress management tools available. It is easy. It is cheap.
- Say “NO WAY!” The pressure is always on to do more. Learn when and how to say no, unless it fits in with your goals or job description.
- Master conflicts. Conflict is a major source of stress in our life. However, it can be dealt with positively. Make it your goal to get comfortable with conflict. Learn how to handle different situations.
- Exercise. Regular exercise has the mega-benefits of making your heart and lungs stronger, giving you more energy and a better self-image. Regular activity provides better sleeping paterns and makes you more attractive. Start a program and stick to it!
- Get away. When the office or your work is getting too crazy and the pressures and interruptions are driving you nuts, get away from it for awhile. Take a ten minute sabbatical.
- Get a pal; be a pal. Sometimes all you need is someone to talk to, to confide in, to complain to. The buddy system allows you to have somebody you can go to when you are feeling overwhelmed. We all need somebody to ease the tension. Criteria to making the buddy system work: Give advice only when asked. There must be complete trust and confidentiality.
Select one stress management key and practice it for three weeks. That is the time it takes to integrate a new behavior into your daily routine. Each new challenge feeds on past successes. Before you know it you will become the calmer, more energetic and purposeful person you set out to be.
What you accomplish in your life is the result of what you accomplish in a typical day.
- Plan your day the night a before. With a just-completed day fresh in your mind, you know where you are on projects. Priorities will fall into place naturally. You can end the day mentally free because all the ends are tied up and you are prepared for a new start in the morning.
- Know your rhythms and work with them. Schedule routine tasks for low-energy periods and important tasks when you are bright.
- Be ruthless with time-wasters. Do you have perfectly active days in which absolutely nothing is accomplished? Develop a mindset that judges every activity in terms of whether it brings you closer to your goals. You will know when to say “no” and others will learn to respect your time as well.
- Work with people who keep their word. And, remember to keep yours! When you know you can count of people to do what they say they will do, you can in turn make commitments and trust that things will happen.
- Build in concentration blocks. Set aside a portion of your day to concentrate–no interruptions, no phones, no visitors, no distractions. Ask for assistance in achieving this goal. We can all help each other to grow.
- Organize your tools. If you don’t have the proper tools to do the job then get them. A desk is not a place to stack all the items you want to remember. It is a tool to expedite the receiving and processing of information. Sticky notes were a great invention, but not a means of decoration. Too many notes scattered about creates confusion.