As we kickoff 2021, why not make this the year you finally stop complaining about how stressed you are and instead do something about it.
If you’re like most of us, you probably have more stress than you want, especially as a result of dealing with the pandemic and politics.
Now, some of that stress is energizing and gets you moving.
But, what about the stress that keeps you up at night, gets you gobbling too many sweets, or has your stomach aching?
If you hear yourself saying, “I’m so busy,” that’s code for stress. I used to be a proud “stress complainer,” thinking my enormous stress reflected my importance.
Well, back in 2017 I decided to finally tackle my stress in an entirely new way.
So, what did I do?
Here’s the first step I took to lessen my stress.
Every single day—for one year—I set an intention to find a moment of stress. That’s right. I went looking for stress. And, boy, did I find it.
There were little moments, like when I forgot to place my coffee mug on the little tray for single serve coffee and I had a coffee river flowing down my cabinets, even filling a ladle inside a drawer.
And some massive stress moments, like a dire health diagnosis of metastatic breast cancer that blindsided me.
Right in the middle of each moment, big and small, I asked myself this powerful question:
How can I think or behave differently so this moment of stress works for me not against me?
I kept a journal to capture what I noticed and learned.
I don’t use the phrase life-changing lightly. But, here’s what truly happened. By the end of three months, I started to become more at peace and more joyful. I discovered patterns to my stress and created new ways to manage it.
If you want to give my approach a try start by spotting your stress. Aim to find for one stressful moment a day. Then right in the middle of the moment generate some options for how you could think or behave differently.
When you stick with this you’re likely to start seeing some shifts in your response to stress in as little as a few weeks.
So, I’d say that from setting an intention to spotting your stress every day and asking how you can think and behave in a new way, you too can learn new ways to respond right in the middle of each stressful moment.
And when you do you’ll be on your way to more peace in 2021 and no longer being a proud stress complainer.
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