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Stress – We all need it!

Sure, we all need a certain amount of stress in our daily lives – we’re built that way, but too much stress is killing us – literally.

So how can you deal with stress, in a positive way, to ensure that you’re controlling it and not it you?

Regular Exercise
As we exercise we use up the adrenaline that builds up in stressful situations – it is part of our “flight or fight” response mechanism and as we’re doing nothing the adrenaline just stays un-used.  Exercise also leaves us with a sense of achieving something – even if it only a walk (rather than a car ride) to the local dairy.

Eat well
Make sure your diet contain adequate vitamins and minerals – we all know about the 5 a day – there’s now research to suggest that 7 a day might be even better for us.  Try growing your own vegetables.

Make sure you are getting enough sleep.  Only trial and error will give you your X hour’s requirement – we are all different.

Take time for yourself
Make sure that you are doing things in the day that are important to you – and not because you have to, or should be doing them.  Don’t feel guilty about taking time out to smell the roses, read a book, draw, paint, play with your grandchildren or children.

Learn to say NO
Saying NO to projects and tasks you cannot take on.  People haven’t got ESP so by saying know all you are doing is telling them the truth.  Think before you commit yourself.  Don’t just say yes to please the other person – if you’re doing this, talk it over with someone you trust.

Work out Priorities
Keep a list – and make sure the tasks are possible.  Remember important people in your life and their relationships with you are also important “tasks”.

Make a list of stressors
Sounds odd?  No.  Make a list of events and things you do which leave you drained – and work out how you might do them better (or use the NO word!).

We all make mistakes
Don’t dwell on history – learn from the mistakes – make it a positive experience.  Learn to forgive yourself for past mistakes.

Uncork the bottle
Don’t let frustration and anger build up inside you until the cork bursts from the bottle.  Let go of grudges, they just take up so much time and energy.

Take your time
At work, ask for time to appraise the task, orient yourself to the situation.  Ask people to wait!  Plan ahead – remember the priorities list?  At home, take your time, don’t be rushed – ask yourself what has to be done as opposed to what I would like to do – again, that priority list.

Road Rage
Drive defensively and give way to bullies.  It is surprising how often an average speed works out for everyone on the same journey – often you arrive at the traffic light just next to the idiot who was pushing to overtake and taking risks.  Remember to breathe and find a radio station that is enjoyable to listen to, rather than a talk show that may “wind you up”.

Alcohol and Smoking
Sorry – they offer only temporary relief – well some actually shorten your life in excess.  Consider their use carefully.

Take time to play
No one’s dying words were: “I wish I’d spent more time at work”.  Take time to play – however you may define play.  Despite all its troubles, sham and drudgery, the world still is a beautiful place – take time to enjoy it.


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