Stress gets to us all. Whether it’s work or home-related; it can leave us feeling drained, tired, stuck and unable to move forward.
To succeed in both business and life generally, you need to learn both how to minimise the likelihood of being affected by stress AND how you deal with the effects of stress if you get it.
Follow these five easy tips to minimise stress now.
Learn to say no
This can be a big hurdle to overcome for most women. We are taught from an early age the need to be polite and as helpful as we can be – but this doesn’t do our stress levels any good. If you really don’t want to do something – say no!
If however, the thought of saying “no” to your nearest and dearest totally stresses you out – start by teaching yourself to pause before you answer.
You can then use this brief pause to think and feel if you really want to give a yes or no response… and if you don’t know, simply say you cannot give an answer just yet, and you’ll get back to them.
Remember the tortoise and hare? Slow and steady will win the day. Women especially are seen to be brilliant at multitasking – but juggling several things at once can really lead you towards a higher level of stress.
Slow down and take a minute to pause. Is your heart racing? Are you holding your breath? Take a deep breath in and let it slowly go.
Now look at your “To Do” list and prioritise your tasks. Work through it methodically and enjoy what you’re doing… not just the end results.
Listen to your body
Following on from the point above, learn to listen and take notice of what your body is telling you. Take the time to breathe, calm and compose yourself.
Is your body crying out for a rest? Take regular breaks from long tasks… and between smaller tasks!
If you feel the need to take a catnap – have one and lose the guilt over it. Taking a break is the quickest way to feel rejuvenated.
Even better – get out in the fresh air!
If you can’t remember the last time you had a lunch break… schedule one in! Just because you work from home, it doesn’t mean you can’t have regular breaks.
Live in the now
Learn to stay present in the now. Are you constantly beating yourself over the head because you made a mistake yesterday?
How about last week or last year? The past is gone and you cannot change it!
Maybe your eyes are firmly fixed on the big end goal? It’s easy to be seduced by your dream of what’s to come – and having a dream is great for motivation, if it’s used properly – but learn to appreciate the journey along the way too.
Lower your expectations
This doesn’t mean you can’t aim high and, as per the quote by Norman Vincent Peale: “shoot for the moon. Even if you miss you may just land amongst the stars.” But if you do land amongst those stars… are you going to feel disappointed because you didn’t reach your target?
If your aim is to get 10 new clients – are you going to feel disappointed if you only get 8?
Was 10 clients a realistic expectation in the timescale you set yourself? Ensure you’re not setting yourself up for a load of stress, by setting unachievable or unrealistic expectations for yourself.
Do you have a great example of a stress-relieving habit; one that you’re currently using in your daily work or home life? What was the biggest “ah-ha” moment you had when learning to deal with stress? Why not share your thoughts and tips in the comments box below.