“When you feel overwhelmed, go outside and look up at the sky. Notice how much bigger than you it is, and remind yourself that there is something much more vast than what you are feeling in that moment.”

-Rose Caiola

5 ways to deal with stress

In honor of Stress Awareness Day, I wanted to discuss how to identify the cause of stress and help you create a plan of action to overcome it.

According to the Oxford dictionary, stress is an external force placed upon an object that produces strain. Used in its mechanical term here, it also has personal relevance for us. External forces and factors have the potential to change us for better or for worse. By understanding this, we can ask ourselves to look at the external factors in our lives and be more conscious of their effect on us and more intentional about how we relate to them.

What’s Causing You Stress?

One way to conquer your stress is to ask yourself the question, then make some alone time to sit down with a pen and paper and write out an external factor that is weighing on you right now. For example, work. Be specific: if it’s a deadline, write it down; if you hate your job, why?

Once you have a clear idea of what’s causing your stress, explore simple strategies that will help you feel less pressure – for example, outline today’s to-do list. Go through this process until you feel you have some perspective and realistic strategies for connecting to them in the moment. Trust me, you’ll see that some stressors require action while others will benefit simply from being acknowledged and clarified.

5 Ways to Deal with Stress

1. Always have a plan

Map out each day’s schedule the night before or first thing in the morning. Include a start time and an end time for each task.

2. Don’t get hung up by small stuff

Sometimes over-focusing on details that aren’t immediate priorities is just a way to distract yourself from what needs your attention now. Learn to recognize the difference.

3. Schedule time for yourself

Whether it’s taking a bath, getting a massage or reading a book, build it into your schedule. Otherwise, it probably won’t happen.

4. Unplug

Set aside a chunk of time each day to be offline. Revel in the non-digital!

5. Reward yourself

After finishing a task you’ve been putting off, go for a nice dinner, listen to your favorite music or enjoy some time outdoors. Doing this on a regular basis helps rewire your thinking, by linking annoying tasks to positive moments.

Do you have a tip for me? I invite you to share them in the comments below!

Rose Caiola

Inspired. Rewired.

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