Stress: We all have it, right? Everybody faces difficult situations, whether personally or professionally, that make them tense up, make their heart rate increase, and increase cortisol production. I have been experiencing some extremely high-stress situations in my own life lately, with more stress than I have ever had to deal with at one time before, so I’ve been forced to figure out a way to handle it without going stark raving crazy (even though just letting go and letting myself go crazy sounds awfully tempting sometimes). So far, though, I haven’t given in to the temptation, so I thought I’d share some of the things I’ve been doing that I have found helpful.
1. Embrace it!
This sounds crazy, I know. You’re experiencing some really negative emotions, so why in the world would you want to embrace it? But what I’ve found is that once you embrace the stress and decide you’re going to deal with it, you’ll be able to hit the ground running in getting over it.
2. Figure out exactly what you’re facing.
This is arguably one of the most important parts of dealing with stress. After all, you can’t start dealing with something unless you understand it, right? Take some time to figure out exactly what you’re facing, and you’ll be that much more prepared for the unique frustrations each little part of the situation will bring you. Also, for women – check to see where you are in your menstrual cycle, too. Knowing when you’re might be more emotional than is normal for you is never a bad idea.
3. Breathe. On purpose.
This is, hands down, one of the best ways to deal with frustration. Stop whatever you’re doing and take ten deep breaths. Close your eyes, inhale through your nose, and feel your stomach and rib cage expand with the breath. It is amazing how much a difference this makes. Trust me.
4. Get moving.
Try to get some exercise, even if it’s just a little bit. Go for a walk, do some yoga, do 25 jumping jacks in your living room, whatever. Get your blood moving a little bit, and you’ll feel better in no time.
5. Party it out!
Okay, I will confess that I am guilty at times of shutting out those who are close to me when I am feeling stressed, which is basically the dumbest idea ever. Keeping busy, surrounding yourself with people who love and support you, and forcing yourself to take a break from your brain is a great way to help re-energize yourself for whatever you’re facing. You’ll be able to b*tch out your issue, or distract yourself from it for a while. Either way, it’s a win-win.
What are your best ideas for how to deal with stress in a healthy way?