Each one of us has a certain amount of stress, both positive and negative, that we deal with every day. With so many people struggling to make money & pay bills in a weak economy, trying to deal with relationships or fretting over not having any and just trying to make sense of life, can make us feel too much negative stress at times.
Even though we may want to run away or hide our heads in the sand, we can't escape these things. We need to develop positive ways of dealing with the tensions in our lives so that we don't explode and/or do something we will regret later. Please keep reading this article to discover how to get a better handle on stress so you don’t "lose it" and do something crazy that lands you on the evening news or worse.
How to Deal With the Stress in Life Before it Deals With You
There are many ways to successfully deal with stress, but for the purposes of this article I’m going to give you 5 simple, but healthy ways to deal with the difficulties of life. And by actually putting them into practice, you will be better able to deal with the mental & emotional strain in your life.
1. Wake up 15 minutes earlier to jump start your day
This is the time for you to get your mind straight, fix your attitude for the day and just relax. I know many people don’t like getting up early (or don’t want to get out of bed period … especially on Mondays!), but once you get used to it, getting up early in the morning really helps you have a good full day. To make sure you actually get out of bed early, you need to change your attitude about it and get moving. Pray, listen to some feel good music, do a quick 15 minute workout to get your heart pumping, laugh at something that's really funny, relax or do all 5 during your “me” time. The most important thing is to fix your mental compass for the day.
2. Plan ahead to avoid the little things that annoy you
Think about and plan for those little annoying inconveniences that are at the route of your anxiety and stress. It may even be a good idea to make a list of those things along with a contingency plan for handling them. For example, not knowing where the keys to your house key or car can stress you out when you’re pressed for time. Therefore, one way to prepare for things like that is to make a set of spare keys and put them in a place that’s easy for you to remember. This will make sure that these little annoyances won't bother you as much when they happen. For other events that make this list, think of a simple solution to put an end to the thing that causes you distress.
3. Set worthwhile goals and work every day toward achieving them
Set short-term & long-term goals that are important to you and work daily toward achieving them. You need to have them written in a journal and review them daily - especially in the morning when you first get up. Working towards goals that matter to you helps reduce stress, because you are doing things that are worthwhile to you as a person. You are focusing on what you need to do in order to move from Point A to Point E. As you see yourself moving forward toward achieving your goals, you will feel good about yourself and life in general. The result of all of this is a better attitude and outlook on life which can help you better cope with the stressful situations that can come up during your day.
4 Ways to Deal With Stress in Your Life
4. Don't hold grudges
Grudges are huge mental & emotional energy wasters that make you feel lousy about yourself and the person you're holding the grudge against. There's no benefit in focusing that energy on something negative, so let it go and forgive them. We're under the erroneous belief that a grudge is against the other person, when in reality it’s only hurting you. The other person may not even be aware of how you feel about it or might not care about it like that. Either way, it is just not worth the time and/or effort. Life is too short, and you need to focus on the positive things.
5. Do something good for someone else
It's very easy to get caught up in the hustle & bustle of our daily life and become oblivious to the people around us & even shut them out. But doing good things or random acts of kindness for the people around you or even strangers - without expectation of any reward - will go a long way in helping you feel good about your life. Yes, helping others, especially during times when things are the most stressful for you, can help reduce or take away your stress, refocus your energy, and actually make you feel good about yourself & life in general. The amazing thing is these good deeds or acts of kindness don't have to be major; they can be something simple. From my personal experience, these seemingly small good deeds can have a major impact on the lives of others while paying huge dividends in our own lives.
Here's a bonus stress reducer:
Don’t lie or compromise your personal integrity. We all want to be seen in a good light and it can be tempting to say something that's not true to make ourselves look good. No matter how much you think there is to gain from telling a lie, don’t do it. It can become extremely stressful just trying to keep the lie straight with the person(s) you told it to. On the same end, do not put yourself in compromising situations that you will have to lie about later. If you do things that you have to cover up or lie about after the fact, then you are creating a far worse situation for yourself that’s simply not worth it.
From what you’ve read so far, I hope you realize that there are many little things that you can do in your day - to - day life to make it less stressful. By actually practicing these healthy ways to deal with stress, you will have a better handle on how to deal with the stresses in your life.