Are you stressed at work?
Here’s something you need to realize: its all you! Pressure and stress are not the same thing; stress is your reaction to pressure
Easiest way to reduce stress is to stop yourself thinking about things over and over in a negative way.
1) PAY ATTENTION
Catch yourself out when you’re constantly over-thinking about something negative. The brain will put things on “rinse and repeat” in your head when you are worried about them.
Know this: no matter how often you think about something, that will not resolve the issue in your mind. The brain is capable of endless mutations – you will never get through all of the potential options.
The simplest and most effective way to deal with this is to get it down in writing (pictures also work). When you observe yourself* repeating an anxious thought, write it down. Don’t put any pressure on yourself to find solutions, because that will just inhibit your ability to get it out properly.
Spend a week just consciously trying to observe your thoughts. When the anxious ones arise, just answer these questions in writing:
What is the problem?
Why does it bother me?
What are the consequences that I’m afraid will happen?
How much control do I have over this situation?
What actions can I take to have an impact on it?
At what point do I have to let go (when does it leave my ability to control)?
*For more on how to observe yourself, check out this article.
2) FOCUS ON THE PRESENT MOMENT
Anxiety only exists in the past and the future, the present moment is usually uneventful. It’s the worry about the future that eventually turns into stress.
Another great quickfire strategy is to focus all of your attention in the present moment somehow. This could take the form of hiding out somewhere for 5 minutes to do Mindfulness meditation. Or it could mean just really applying yourself to a task.
Tell yourself that you will dedicate the next hour to something important. Focus all of your attention on it for the whole hour. Then see if you can resolve the issue that’s been bothering you. If not, then find something else to apply yourself to.
Physical activity, particularly anything that requires careful attention, is always a winner. This can include lifting weights, surfing and ball sports. Anything that requires your present-time focus.
Consciously command yourself to remove your emotional connection to the stressful event.
Let go of it, just stop, breathe deeply, relax your shoulders and force yourself to smile. Just say to yourself “I’m done worrying about that because it doesn’t help me to do so”.
Repeat these steps EVERY time you catch yourself stressing about the past or the future. You’ll be amazed at what happens after a few weeks of disciplined practice in this
Have a good week!
Book a free one-off session with me to develop a high-impact plan to control your stress through mindfulness techniques and time management.