You are kind, caring, and compassionate. You have dedicated yourself to helping others. It is your life’s calling, your mission. You enjoy your work and would rather be doing it than anything else in the world. Lately however, you have been feeling different.
- Your unhealthy lifestyle is causing you stress rather than making you more stress-resistant.
- Your runaway mind jumps from one stressful thought to another.
- You worry excessively and over-think everything, especially the things you cannot control.
- You feel overwhelmed with responsibilities and demands that leave you exhausted and with little time for yourself and the things in your life that really matter.
- You are unable to say no to the people and demands that put you over the edge.
- You suffer from tense, achy muscles that have you all wound up and unable to relax.
If more than one of these statements applies to you, you need more than just a cookie-cutter approach to conquering stress that treats these common symptoms the same way.
Let me explain;
# 1. A healthy lifestyle is your best defense against stress. High-level wellness across the seven dimensions of health (physical, social, spiritual, intellectual, emotional, occupational and environmental) provides you with a “core defense” against stress. Everything else you do to cope draws on this core. It gives you the energy and coping resources you need to be more stress-resistant. To develop a more stress-resistant lifestyle you need to engage in hardy health habits every day. In time, these daily habits form a lifestyle that is resistant to stress.
# 2. Your mind can be your greatest ally or our your worst enemy in your battle to conquer your stress. To conquer stress you have to understand how your mind works when processing potential stressors and stressful situations. Discovering how to reign in your runaway mind when it obsesses on unhelpful and troubling thoughts is central to effective stress management.
#3. Your mind can also be your greatest ally or worst enemy when dealing with your emotions. Understanding how to co-exist with painful emotions such as worry, fear,and anxiety is a skill that you can learn. Keeping painful emotions alive by ruminating on them over and over is a common mistake people make when trying to “work on” their emotions to control them. The best way to manage painful emotions is to accept them and shift your focus off of them and onto productive behavior.
# 4. Finding your optimal balance between work, play, family, and other responsibilities is a key aspect of keeping these demands on your time and energy from becoming stressors. Everyone has a different threshold for how many fun activities and demands they can handle to get the most out of their life without these same stimuli becoming stressors. You cannot get more hours out of a day so you need to understand how to make your 24 count by spending them doing the things that matter the most to you.
#5. Being unassertive and saying yes to people and demands that suck the life out of you when you really want to say no is a huge source of overload and stress. Becoming more assertive and protective of your time is a skill that you can master at any age.
# 6. Stopping the stress response by inducing a relaxation response is the best way to break your stress response cycle . When you lead with your mind with mental activities such as meditation and visualization, your body will also relax. When you lead with your body through physical activities such as running, stretching, or yoga,your mind will also relax. Leading with your body or mind induces a relaxation response that interrupts your stress response cycle and returns your body and mind to a non-stressed, relaxed state of being.
As you can see, the six most common stress-related symptoms all require different approaches to managing them effectively. There is no single coping approach that works best with all of them. This is why I developed a multi-level defense system against stress called The Five R’s of Conquering Your Stress that attacks stress on five different levels. The system uses five different levels of coping that work independently or together in a synergestic way.
I’ve created a new course, just for coaches called, Stress Coaching A Five Step Approach. The course has been approved by the Center for Credentialing and Education for 6 Coaching CEU credits.
To give you a sense of how the course works I am offering one of the sessions, Becoming More Mindful, for free. If you’ve been curious about Mindfulness and how to become more mindful take advantage of this free offer.
This 45 minute training video is yours completely free just for signing up for more information about the Stress Coaching A Five Step Approach course.
To get your free mindfulness training course: