Stress is typically described as a negative concept that can have an impact on one’s mental and physical well-being. When there is a gap between demand of the situation and demand of the human body’s ability, a psychological and / or physiological imbalance occurs. This imbalance is often defined as stress.
However, there can be positive stress as well as negative stress. It can be positive when a person experiencing it, can gain something out of the experience. He can use it as a motivational factor to perform better. Positive stress helps an individual to stay focused and alert at all times. But if the stress is causing emotional, social or physical problems, then it is negative stress. Negative stress can cause health problems, mood swings, low productivity, and damage relationships and can reduce the quality of your life.
“Being in control of your life and having realistic expectations about your day-to-day challenges are the key to stress management, which is perhaps the most important ingredient to living a happy, healthy and rewarding life.” -Marilu Henner
The three step procedure to follow when you are feeling stressed:
Step 1: The foundation of managing stress is the realisation that you have more control of your life. You have to take charge of your life, of your work, of your schedule, of your emotions and of your thoughts.
Step 2: Then you need to identify what is causing you stress in your life. The cause may not be very obvious but a careful look at your habits, your attitudes, and your excuses may help in identifying the source of stress in your life.
Step 3: The next step would be to find out how you are currently coping with the stress. Are the methods you are using good for you? Are they healthy or unhealthy? Are they really helping you deal with your stress or are they increasing it?
So how do you manage stress?
The unhealthy ways to cope with stress can be procrastinating, over eating, under eating, sleeping too much, withdrawing yourself completely from family and friends, getting angry at others, etc. These methods may reduce your stress for a short time but they are not long time solutions. Try to tap before mentioned “unhealthy” ways.
“Adopting the right attitude can convert a negative stress into a positive one.”- Hans Selye
Learn the healthier ways to cope with stress. Find out what works for you. See if you can avoid the situation that is causing you stress. Try to avoid all unnecessary stressors. If you cannot avoid it then see if you can alter the situations. You may have to be willing to compromise or be more flexible. Manage your time adequately. If that also is not possible then you may have to adapt to the situation. This will require you to change yourself. You will have to change your attitude. Lastly, identify the stressors that cannot be changed. There are some things that are bound to happen and you cannot do anything about them. You may not have any control over certain things like the behaviour of other people. It is better to accept these situations and look for the positive side rather than stress yourself out unnecessarily.
Some of the healthier ways of distressing yourself can be going for long walks, gardening, meditation, pursuing a hobby, chatting with friends, reading a book, photography, writing a journal, playing with your pet, listening to music, etc.
Lastly always remember: “God will never give you anything you cannot handle, so don’t stress.”- Kelly Clarkson