Most people aren’t taught to deal effectively with stress, which is why so many individuals turn to unhealthy and unhelpful behaviors to try to cope with the demands of their daily lives. While there are many ways for people to manage their stress levels, there are three steps that people simply need to take before they go on to utilizing various coping mechanisms, otherwise they might find that nothing works.
Admit It Is Difficult To Cope
There are many people who struggle with the effects of stress but would never admit this to anyone. These days, people tend to feel that admitting this is admitting weakness, or even defeat, but this isn’t the case at all. It is merely the first step to learning how to effective cope with stress. Secretly trying to cope with increasingly terrifying panic attacks, or turning to unhealthy coping mechanisms such as alcohol and drugs will not make the problem go away, and it is important for people to accept this before they will be able to find the answer.
Once people are ready to admit that they have a problem, they will most likely be introduced to a world where a surprising number of people are struggling with the same problem. This not only helps establish a sense of belonging within them, but it also helps them clearly see the problem for what it is; a real, tangible issue that can be solved with the right tools.
Take Note of Your Rising Stress Levels
You can’t manage your stress levels if you aren’t aware of them, so the first thing you need to do when managing these levels is to recognize them long before they are out of control. People often don’t realize that their stress levels are rising until they are just about out of control, and by then it might be too late (or very difficult) to lower them to manageable levels. This often leads people to think of themselves as ticking time bombs, ready to explode at any minute. The truth is, however, that the signs are often there long before a person is ready to blow their lid.
People begin to take note of their rising stress levels in different ways. Some professionals suggest that individuals keep an hourly log of their feelings throughout the day, along with events that occurred recently before the entry. This helps people take note not only of how they are feeling, but also those events that trigger their rising stress levels.
Other people focus on their physical reactions, such as taking note of those instances where their heart rates are raised. Once again, it helps to log these feelings, as well as the surrounding events so that patterns can be identified.
Focus On How You Want To Feel
Once a person understands that chronic stress isn’t a normal or healthy reaction to every day events, they need to begin teaching themselves to react in a healthier way. To accomplish this, people should spend time imagining how they want to feel in various situations.
Dealing with stress is integral to healthy functioning, but it can also be difficult for people who have spent their lives believing how they feel is normal, or simply can’t be altered. For this reason, a few basic mindset changes are required to help give them a head start in effectively managing their stress levels.