by Cindy Killip
Stress seems to sneak up on us when we least expect it and at the worst possible times. But the reality is that stress usually takes awhile to brew and the right circumstances to erupt. With the right attitude, you can alter those circumstances so the stressful situations in your life don’t ruin your day. Here are eight easy attitude adjustments that will help you manage stress no matter where you are.
1) Take a time-out. Sneak off to a quiet room and take 5 minutes to relax. Close your eyes, breathe deeply, enjoy the peace, and focus on something positive. Stretch your neck, shoulders and back. Then return to the action with a renewed sense of well-being.
2) Laugh. When a stressful situation hits, imagine that a laughtrack is being played, or that you are a guest on Candid Camera. Laugh at yourself or the situation to regain proper perspective. Most stressful situations do not play a significant role in our lives, yet we allow them to, and we suffer the consequences of lost time, money and health.
3) Remember, “the problems of 3 people don’t amount to a hill of beans in this world.” — Humphrey Bogart, Casablanca.
4) Look ahead. Ask yourself, “in 10 years, will it really matter that the dishwasher flooded the kitchen at the same time my poodle went into labor?”
5) Learn to forgive and forget. Allow yourself to feel angry, discuss your feelings with someone you respect or the person who made you angry, then move on. Do not waste your energy harboring bad feelings.
6) Slip outside for a 10-minute walk. Enjoy the outdoors — smell the flowers, watch the birds, feel the fresh air, play.
7) Schedule time to read, watch a favorite t.v. show, work on a hobby or take a hot bubble bath.
8) Hypothesize. If a situation seems hopeless, ask yourself this question, “What is the absolute worst outcome that could come from this?” Then take a minute to come up with the worst possible scenarios you could face and solutions for each scenario. You’ll soon realize that you can handle any outcome. Remember, God does not allow us to face any challenge that is too great for us.