Do you feel like there is no end in sight to all of the stress you have been living with over the last seven months?
I think that most everyone is feeling tired and frustrated. Our brains have been wired to handle stress in the short term. You can likely remember a time when you actually easily rose to the occasion and performed even better. However COVID has thrown us off our game.
COVID struck, we reacted, then normalized. Summer provided a bit of respite for many. A break from school (so much rested on parents), nicer weather and a bit more freedom. Then September happened. Schools and employers were trying out new normals.
Stress levels went up and the second wave has sent shivers through us all. Not quite like the first wave but with likely less optimism. The season is working against us, it is getting cooler, the days are getting shorter and the pre-COVID pressures of life are roaring back.
Well all is not lost, it is not too late.
I want you to take three post-it notes. On the top of the first one I want you to write WORK (if that applies). The second one SURROUNDED by FAMILY and the third one is ALONE.
As you know not all strategies work in those three situations. What we want to do is have your own personal list done ahead of time. That is going to circumvent the self talk “if only I could”.
I am going to give you some suggestions to get you started and you may have some favorites. It is important to write them down, leave nothing to chance and no excuses to claim.
Often offers less flexibility, yet since COVID things are very different. In other words things that might not have been possible prior to march may work now.
Here are some of the suggestions that I would rely on:
- Take a 10 minute walk
- Have a cup of tea
- Listen to music
- Implement a breathing exercise. Could be as simple as taking deep breaths in and out
- Look to a favorite item which brings you joy - could be a picture, a mug, we want to interrupt the thought process
Perhaps a bit more flexibility, yet may require your presence for time sensitive activities, like feeding the family, preparation for the next day and the list goes on.
- Implement a breathing exercise Could be as simple as taking deep breaths in and out.
- Commit to setting aside 15 minutes for you to read something that inspires you
- If you enjoy a bath, add some salt and scent to allow the body to decompose
- Put your headphones on and complete some of those tasks that require only a physical commitment
Maximum flexibility to choose the big recharge items.
- Meditate - have your practice written down
- Yoga - sequence thought out
- Long Walks
- Breathing Exercise
I want you to set time aside to write out your little plan on post-it notes! When stress hits, I want you to be ready. The above are only suggestions, but once you have your own list you will have signaled your commitment to taking action when you are feeling the impact.
LOOP Guest Blogger:
Barb Fletcher is a Stress Expert. She has experienced her share of stress and walks the talk! She meets those she works with where they are at, customizing her approach. Everyone is on a different journey and a one size fits all just will not do. She is a certified HeartMath Coach & Trainer and uses many additional tools she has acquired over her career to quickly guide people on the road to feeling better. This transformation is available to everyone. She delivers her sessions virtually both individually and in groups. She offers a 20 minute call to help you break through your stress. Follow this link to book: https://calendly.com/barb-31/get-on-it-call.