Seeing that you are on this page, there is a high chance that you are dealing with a lot of stress in your life and is looking for some way to healthily deal with it through a stress management program.
Well, it cannot be denied that stress is a fact of everyday life. As a matter of fact, some stressors can leave us feeling emotionally and physically overwhelmed—that our resources or skills are inadequate to deal with the high levels of stress we are experiencing.
What Is Stress?
Stress is generally defined as a feeling of tension that is both emotional and physical. We can experience stress from four basic sources—the environment, social roles, physiological circumstances and our thoughts. Situations that are considered stress provoking are known as stressors.
Stress is simply the body’s response to changes that create taxing demands—it is not always a bad thing as we normally perceive it. There is a difference between what we perceive as positive stress and negative stress. For example, positive stress motivates you, focuses your energy and improves your performance. On the other hand, negative stress can cause you to feel anxious or tensed and inhibit you from doing what you need to do.
Stress is a normal part of life. In small quantities, stress is good; it can motivate you and help you become more productive. However, too much stress, or a strong response to stress can be harmful. How we perceive a stress provoking event and how we react to it determines its impact on our health. If we always respond to stress in a negative way, our health and happiness may suffer; thus, it is important to have an effective stress management program to follow.
A Practical Stress Management Program
In the most accurate meaning, a stress management program is not about learning how to avoid or escape the pressures and turbulence of modern living; it is about learning to appreciate how the body reacts to these pressures, and about learning how to develop skills which enhance the body’s adjustment. So here is a simple program to help you deal with stress more positively.
Find a strong support system.
Find people who you can talk to, who will support you, and help you deal with overwhelming situations. Go to friends or family members who genuinely care about you and draw out strength from them in times of stress.
Cut yourself some slack.
If you have developed an attitude of criticizing yourself, then you should work on this detrimental habit. Instead, develop the habit of talking to your self positively. Also, you should learn to accept failures and the fact that things will not always go as we plan or want them to.
Set attainable goals.
A lot of people put themselves under a great deal of stress because they set unrealistic goals and try to do more than they are actually capable of. To reduce stress, know your capacities and limitations and accept them.
Although spontaneity has its perks, being organized is the way to go if you want less stress in your life. Get a planner and lay out your schedule and to do list ahead of time. There is just a certain kind of peace in knowing what you need to do the next day.
Take regular breaks.
This does not mean going away on a vacation (although that is also advisable), what I mean is that you should schedule times during the day for you to take a break from whatever it is that you are doing—you can use this to stretch out, walk around or just think of uplifting things.
Make sure you’re getting lots of sleep, eating right, exercising regularly and doing things that you love best.
Don’t rush through assignments or other tasks. Give yourself enough time to do things well and thoroughly. Also learn to take time to see and enjoy the things around you.
Start taking the small steps in this stress management program and be on your way to a happier and less stressful life.
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