Manage Your Stress, Manage Your Life
With workload and exam syllabus bundling up every day, don’t you wish there were more hours in the day? Many times you may find yourself struggling with life – the bills won’t stop coming in, the kids won’t stop demanding, your parents are content with nothing less than an ‘A’. You find yourself in a frustrating situation feeling helpless only wishing if things were simpler somehow.
You don’t realize that the stress is not in control of your life, YOU are. You are in charge of everything – your emotions, decisions, thoughts, and the way you deal with the problems. Once you realize that, you are half way through managing your stress.
Identify the Source of Your Stress
The pace of modern life has made stress management more a need than want for everyone. The first step to stress management is identifying the source of your stress. It may not be as obvious as you think.
You may think your deadlines are the reason of your constant worry, when, in reality it’s your procrastination that is the real quandary. If you starting studying for an exam much later than you should, you can’t really blame your deadline for the anxiety you’re going to face.
Make a stress journal: To identify what exactly is making you feel anxious and uncomfortable, maintain a stress journal and update it each time you feel like your head will burst any second. Okay, maybe not that extreme, but do jot down each event and thought that adds to your stresses.
This will help you identify and understand the pattern of your daily stressors and make stress management easier.
Put an End to Stress Eating
Over-eating or under-eating, smoking, drinking too much, sleeping too much, procrastinating, wasting time doing nothing are some common unhealthy ways of coping with stress.
These won’t help your emotional and physical adaptability to your daily stressors. What will help is an alteration of your reaction to and acceptance of the stressor.
- First things first: When you find yourself stressed and jumbled, jot down a to-do list. Write down, in order of precedence, all the tasks you need to achieve today. Make short-term, realistic goals and don’t forget to prioritize. Now you have everything you need to accomplish today on a piece of paper. Work by it, and keep omitting out every fulfilled task – it’ll make you feel like you achieved something.
- Stay away from people who stress you out. It is often that you come across people who won’t stop complaining about the entire syllabus they have left, or about their impossibly unmanageable workload. Their complains will get you thinking about all the things that YOU have yet to do and will make you anxious. Stay away from these people!
- Tell yourself it’s all doable! It might not be as perfect at the end of the day as you had envisaged it in your head, but it’s OKAY! Reward yourself for each accomplished task and take a breather.
- Learn to say ‘no’ – You don’t have to attend every wedding, be a part of every hangout and be a part of almost every other extra-curricular in school. Say no to your conscience and to others. You have to learn to brush off unimportant things to prioritize crucial ones to avoid cramping and failing to achieve your set goals. Taking on more than you can handle will come in the way of that!
When you practice these simple steps, you’ll realize what an impact stress management has on your life. Things will start looking more doable, bills will be paid on time, and your life will be relatively more balanced than it used to be!