Stress Management and Mastery: 3 Tools You Can Use

Q:We recently had someone come to our company to talk about stress management. All he did was talk about the physical results of stress and tell us we need to not be so stressed and to relax. It really wasn't very helpful, and I was wondering if you could offer some tips on how to handle stress.

A:You've run into a problem I see all too often in the field of stress management, as well as in any other area that involves change.

Anyone can describe the problem for you, sometimes in great detail. Then a few others can describe the problem and tell you what you should do about it. What you need is someone to tell you the how of managing stress.

Three Tools

To get you started on managing stress, here are three tools that you can use right away.

Tool of relaxation.

Here's something I call push-button relaxation. Picture yourself somewhere that is very relaxing and peaceful. See, hear and feel everything as if you were there. Create your own personal button to create this picture/feeling. For some people it's a snap of the fingers, others use a word or phrase - whatever quickly takes you there in your imagination. Use your push-button when you're feeling stress and notice the difference.

Tool of battle.

This does not mean grab your sword and shield. It does mean to pick your battles wisely. It's vital to ask: Is this a battle worth fighting?

Many of us tend to major in minor things. We let too many little things upset us. The more you ask this question, the less you'll have needless battles, and you'll have less stress and more energy.

Tool of fun and spontaneity.

We've just about killed off fun and spontaneity with our over-scheduled, day-planner-run lives. I've even seen one friend's daily schedule that had a 15-minute block that reminded him to "have fun."

Here's my challenge to you: Sometime in the next week, do something spontaneous and fun.

If you really want to mamage and master stress, use all three of these tools.

For more tips and tools to manage and master stress visit Tools for Successful Living

In The News:

How to Avoid Burnout – Dakota Student  UND The Dakota Student
Stress Relief for Overwhelmed Women  Health Essentials from Cleveland Clinic
Eat These Foods to Reduce Stress and Anxiety  Health Essentials from Cleveland Clinic
Doing What Matters in Times of Stress  World Health Organization
Stress: what it is and how to deal with it  Chartered Management Institute

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