Question your stress to relieve it I Psych Central
We all experience stress at some point in our lives. Questioning your stress can help put it into perspective and lessen its effects.
This is an opinion piece. While we support other diverse perspectives and experiences, the opinions expressed by the author do not necessarily represent the opinions, voice, or position of Psych Central.
I will never forget the night a friend called me feeling stressed and guilty. She’s a working single mom and after a long day at work with no time or energy to cook, she got involved. a crime.
She let her two daughters eat Cheerios for dinner. Gasp!
(They were thrilled, by the way.)
She felt like a bad mother – like she was failing in life. She felt like she was the only tired parent on earth who didn’t perfectly cook endless organic, balanced meals.
On the phone, when I felt her stress, my only objective during our conversation was to make her laugh by giving her a dose of perspective.
I told him to call the authorities right away. I said, “My God, I hope your daughters don’t end up in the hospital because you poisoned them.” I also told him that I might even have to re-evaluate our friendship in light of his bad manners.
As a friend, I enjoy helping people relieve their stress. And as a life coach, that’s my job.
Questioning the stress you experience on a daily basis rather than accepting it at face value as the truth can help put it into perspective.
If you don’t, you might feel stress at every turn – work, money, relationships, meals (!) – and then judge yourself for your high stress levels, which will make you feel even worse.
Consider asking yourself:
- How stressed am I right now?
- Is stress real, a legitimate threat to me? Or is it imaginary, rather a judgment on myself or a situation?
- Am I playing a movie in my mind about something that I have no certainty will happen in the future (or isn’t even that likely to happen)?
- Is there a way to be easier and gentler with myself?
There are three questions I keep coming back to when looking at my stress and trying to find the truth.
1. How serious is it, really?
In my friend’s case, it didn’t matter at all. There were no long-term risks or consequences for a single grain dinner.
My mother was living with depression and we were on welfare. I ate cereal for dinner all the time, and I think it turned out well.
Consider this: How bad is the situation causing your stress right now, right now?
In some cases, it is much less severe than our initial somatic response would lead us to believe.
2. What is essential here?
When it comes to kids and dinner, the most important thing is that they eat Something.
What about your current situation? Is there a simple step or step forward you can take to solve it?
It doesn’t have to be all figured out now, and it doesn’t have to be perfect. Try to figure out the most essential thing or action you can take, and then do it.
3. How can I make this easier?
This is the best question to stimulate your creativity and take action!
Positive questions can lead to positive answers. And negative questions can lead to negative answers or actions.
Negative questions might look like this:
- “What am I doing wrong?”
- “Why is it so difficult?”
- “Will this situation ever end?”
But if you’re wondering: how can I make this easier?You can get creative with your answer.
I navigated an awkward conversation with an entrepreneur by viewing it as a gentle, honest conversation versus an uncomfortable confrontation.
I lovingly asked her if there was a reason why she had dropped the ball a few times in recent weeks – and there was. She is going through a divorce. Our clear communication has made our working relationship better than ever.
My nearly 80 year old mum lives in the UK and said she didn’t want visitors or travel because she was afraid of contracting coronavirus.
Instead of forcing her to see me or telling her how sad I am that I miss her, I remind myself that being alone right now is the way she is happiest and feels most secure. . And that’s what I want—his happiness. This truth relieves me.
When I feel overwhelmed, my first thoughts may be, “I have a million things going on. I can not support it !”
But then I remember what submersion can mean:A response to stress when things are going well.
Instead of thinking that being overwhelmed is a negative response, try to figure out if this feeling might be happening because a lot of things you wanted are happening at the same time.
I was recently coaching a client who was feeling overwhelmed because she was about to have her second baby, her company was busier than ever, and she was about to get her MBA.
So what was the cause of her feeling overwhelmed when we got to the bottom of it? Three blessings appearing at once! Everything she had ever dreamed of having.
If you want to learn more about stress and how to deal with it, check out these pages on Psych Central:
If you want to know how stressed you are, consider taking our stress level test to find out.
When you’re feeling stressed, try calmly reviewing a plan and your options. Try to breathe deeply and think about your situation.
Asking yourself about the reason for your stress can help you put the situation into perspective and find a solution that suits you.
Taking a mental exhale can restore your time, energy, and creativity! And you, your future and your nervous system deserve it.
If your stress is impacting your daily life, consider contacting a mental health professional for help. It’s especially important to seek help if your stress is affecting your physical and mental health or seems to be getting worse.
If you’re not sure where to start, you can check out Psych Central’s hub for mental health support.