Reduce the Overwhelm of Stress

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Aug 182020
 

Stress can build up to overwhelm you, or create worry or anxiety. When you’re in the middle of it, it’s hard to know what to do and which way to turn. Learn a 4-step process to take control of  what’s stressing you and find solutions.

Transcript:

Thank you for joining me. Is stress overwhelming you, or causing you to worry or be anxious? Right now, there’s a lot of reason for this, isn’t there? But what can you do about it? I’m Linda-Ann Stewart of Heartvision Consulting, and I’d like to share a simple tip to help you get a bit of control over what’s causing your stress.

A lot of the overwhelm you’re experiencing is because there’s so much change happening in your life. This happens when you move, change jobs, get married, have a child, or anything else that causes massive adjustment in your life. Right now, the upset is coming from outside forces. But there are still things you can do to manage your stress.

I’d like to share a 4 step process that can help you take control.

1. Make a list of all the things that are stressing you out, no matter how small. Include the items that you want to avoid, because they cause you worry and anxiety, too, don’t they?

When you get them out of your head and onto paper, it helps your mind to process them differently. It’s like you’re emptying out a very full jar of water to create space for something better. When you’re able to see them all, you can get a better perspective.

2. Once you have the list, eliminate the items that aren’t causing you much stress. They’re just the minor details that might annoy you, but you can easily handle. This is a step that helps you to gain better perspective.

3. Next, eliminate the items that you can’t do anything about. This could be things other people are doing, or not doing, or other things you have no control over. They don’t merit your attention, because you can’t impact them right now.

4. What’s left are the big items that are concerning you. Take each one, and ask yourself, “What can I do about this?” There will probably be some small actions you can take with each item. Then start taking some of those actions.  

By taking charge with this list and deciding on some actions to take, even a small ones, you’ve shifted your focus from feeling powerless to seeking possible solutions. Instead of shutting down your creative mind from stress, you’re inviting other options to surface. You created the empty jar. This will free you to start taking actions that will begin to reduce your list, and your stress. Also, when you do, more solutions will start to present themselves.

If you’d to achieve a 90-day goal more easily, download my free comprehensive Strategic Vision guide at www.Linda-AnnStewart.com/setyourcourse.html. You’ll receive the guide, as well as a training video of that walks you through it with tips and directions to support you in accomplishing your goal.

Thank you for watching. I suggest you take the time to create your list, and notice how you’re able to get a handle on your stress. Take care.

Read the accompanying article, 4 Ways to Manage Your Stress.

4 Ways to Manage Your Stress

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Aug 072020
 
Woman surrounded by stressful thoughts

by Linda-Ann Stewart

When a stressful situation arises, your brain perceives it to be a threat. As a result, your mind instructs your body to react to the circumstance and keep you safe. Any change to your routine or situation is also considered stressful, even if it’s beneficial, like a promotion. And it doesn’t matter if the danger is mental or physical, real or imagined. Your mind can’t distinguish between them, and signals your body to prepare for a fight or flight.

This survival mode closes down the pathway to your Higher Self. You operate instinctively, to protect yourself, and can’t access your intuition, which is a higher level insight.

For instance, your boss might call you into his office, and you’re dreading a confrontation. You feel tense and worry about what it could be about. Instead of being angry, he wants to praise your work on a report. Your stress was caused by your imagination. If the cause of stress isn’t addressed and relieved, that pressure can escalate to a feeling of free floating anxiety and depression.

How You Deal with Stress

When you’re stressed, all of your mental resources focus on handling the crisis. You feel like you have no control. To cope, your attention narrows to what’s right in front of you and you can’t think straight or be creative. Instead, you act reflexively, as you have in the past, whether it was helpful or not. And you remain in this habitual state until the stressful situation passes.

Although you may not be able to control outer circumstances, you can control your reactions. By changing the way you respond to stress, your results change. When you feel in control, you make better decisions and can innovate to solve problems. Taking charge of your actions is vital to your health and well-being.  

Many spiritual people object to the idea of being in control. They want to be “in the flow.” Being “in the flow” is different from drifting at the mercy of outside forces. Spiritual people also associate being in control with “control freaks,” who run on fear and lack of trust. Being in control means making conscious choices and being intentional about your actions.

How You Can Gain Control

Here are some ways you can manage stress, rather than letting it manage you.

1. Delay your reaction. Remember, as a child, you were told to count to 10 when you were angry? There is a valid reason for this. When you pause for 10 seconds, it gives your conscious mind time to assert itself. That allows it to move to a more rational position and lets you recognize the consequences of losing your temper. You also have more access to other solutions. To give yourself time, take a walk, go into another room, or do something to take your mind off of it temporarily.

2. Be mindful. Instead of getting swept along by your anxiety, focus on the present. Ask yourself, “What can I control in this moment?” You may not be able to control the environment, the situation, or other people, but you have authority over other things in your life. For example, you can do something nice for yourself or others, remember all the things you’re grateful for, or read something inspirational.

3. Take small steps. Instead of getting overwhelmed, do one tiny thing, like wash the dishes. Then do another. Take one tiny aspect of what’s stressing you, and deal with it. For instance, if you’re concerned about finances, balance your checkbook. When you take action on a single thing at a time, you’re able to calm down your nervous system.

4. Use self-talk. Talk yourself through the problem. When you have an internal (or out loud) conversation with yourself, it allows you to be clearer about the issue. You’re able to organize your thoughts and evaluate what your options might be. Also, you’ve shifted your attention from feeling powerless to seeking a way through the stress. This engages your problem solving partner, your subconscious mind.

Feeling in control is your first step to reducing stress and moving towards a beneficial outcome. As you take charge, you have more power to change your habits and behaviors so you create the life you want. And you’re able to access your Higher Self and your intuition, so you can mine the treasure they bring to create your ideal situation.  

Affirmation:

The Universe is always available to help me deal with stress, but first I need to help myself. I have control over my reactions to situations that cause me stress. Once I acknowledge that truth, I can start taking action to reduce the pressure I feel. The more in control I feel, the more energy I have to create the ideal life I desire.

Watch the accompanying video, Reduce the Overwhelm of Stress.

As a vision strategist, hypnotherapist, and speaker, Linda-Ann Stewart helps women entrepreneurs and small business owners who feel stuck, immobilized and overwhelmed to to get clear, focused and on the fast track to the next level of their business. To achieve a 90-day goal more easily, sign up for her FREE comprehensive Strategic Vision blueprint at www.Linda-AnnStewart.com/setyourcourse.html. You can contact her at LAS@Linda-AnnStewart.com or 928-600-0452.

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~ Linda-Ann Stewart