Stress is a part of life. Yes, there I said it. You might not like it but I’m sure you agree. Now, I believe that a little stress is even good for you. Stress gives us that adrenaline boost when we’re doing something new, making us more alert and feeling more alive. And, that’s certainly how I’m feeling when I’m sea kayaking out on the huge waves on Lake Michigan or Lake Superior.
Yet as you know, too much stress gives you a headache, disrupts your digestion and burns up your precious life force energy. Stress can also make you irritable and feeling overwhelmed and long-term stress like this will make you feel like your life is a struggle. This happens to people-pleasing and sensitive women way too often and I want to help you bust your stress so you can feel incredible and really shine.
Here are some steps you can take to bust that stress:
Step 1: Notice when you are feeling stressed
Believe it or not, many people are chronically stressed and they don’t even know it. They believe that it’s just the way they are and it’s the way life is.
Check in with yourself – what stresses are you experiencing right now?
Close your eyes and scan your body. Notice where you are feeling tension or discomfort.
Now, observe your breathing. Is it shallow and tight or barely there?
Next, what are you thinking about? See Step 2 for how your thoughts can stress you out.
Step 2: Identify your top 3 stressors
What are your top 3 stressors?
Believe it or not, most of our stress comes from within ourselves. For example, someone may say unkind words to you but it’s how you respond to those words – what you tell yourself about them that determines how stressful they are to you.
Self-sabotaging habits are another major source of stress. What habits of yours are you chronically berating yourself for or feeling embarrassed about? Be courageous and take note of them.
The biggest source of our stress is actually our self-talk; the talk we carry on non-stop inside our own minds. How do you speak to yourself within your own private thoughts – as someone who needs to be watched and nagged continually or as a dear friend?
It takes courage to observe what your three main stressors are. The easiest way to do this is to simply notice when you’re feeling stressed and then ask yourself how your response is escalating or reducing your stress.
Step 3: Pick one practice to reduce your stress and start doing it!
What are you doing to reduce your stress? Is it working? Does it reduce your stress or does it stress you again later by hurting your self-esteem – like having comfort food or surfing the web too much?