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Dealing with Stress in Simple Steps

Being under stress is fast becoming a way of life for most everyone. So much so, that the term, 'stressed out' is part of our vernacular. No doubt, there's plenty of reasons to be stressed out.

The question then becomes how to deal with stress. It's first necessary to identify the type and sources of stress that plague you. You also need to assess the frequency and severity of stress you regularly experience, as well as your personality type.

Let's say you're always worrying about your finances, put more on your daily plate than you can possibly manage, or are just the nervous type who finds potential disaster around every corner. Any of these situations creates stress and does take its toll on your health and general level of happiness in life. Dealing with stress becomes manageable when you apply a methodology and a few techniques.

While one personality may be so laid back that it takes an earthquake to elicit a stressful response, another may be so sensitive to stress factors that all it takes is a broken hair dryer or searching for their car keys to get them in a tizzy – stressed out. The mellow personality seldom experiences stress to the degree that their life is seriously affected. The sensitive, nervous types are usually feeling stressed out on a regular basis. While it's entirely possible to be too laid back, if you're constantly stressed out, you might want to take a page from the guy or gal you have to wake up when there's an earthquake. Effective methods of dealing with stress require that you learn to put events and situations in the proper perspective. So, how do you do this?

One technique of dealing with stress, that is both instructive and effective, is to keep a 'stress diary'. A small, pocket sized notebook is sufficient. Every time you feel that adrenalin getting out of hand, jot down a note. Are you late for work? Did you just receive an overdue bill notice? Have a fight with your sweetie? Keep track of each incident for at least a couple of weeks. You'll soon see the pattern of events which trigger your stress. Perhaps you'll find that being late is prominent. Maybe interactions at work get you going, or you're a chronic worrier.

Whatever the case may be, go through your notebook and assess which triggers are due simply to how you prioritize your daily tasks. For example, if you always get up at the last minute and are thus frequently late for work, there's a simple remedy. Either get up earlier, or make preparations the night before, such as laying out clothes or making lunch, that gets you out the door on time. The person who spends half an hour a day finding their keys needs to put them in a designated spot, every day. Your 'stress diary' can be quite revealing on points like this. We often create our own stress purely out of habit. Dealing with stresses of this type are easily remedied.

If you find that your stress is mainly due to worrying about finances, it's time to make a strict budget. If your obligations exceed your income, a debt consolidation service might be an answer to your major stresses. If you're fighting with your sweetie every other day, consider counseling, get a self help book on relationships or effective communication. Dealing with stress requires that you be proactive in identifying major sources of stress and then brainstorm possible solutions.

You'll be amazed at how fruitful your 'stress diary' proves and how much stress can be eliminated in a hurry.

Your efforts in dealing with stress can be greatly enhanced by making time to chill out, doing something you enjoy. Rigorous physical exercise burns off energy and stress. Take a break. Don't drive yourself too hard. Use imaging techniques – daydream on that island paradise, with you in the beach chair with an ice cold drink. Take a yoga class. Meditate. Dealing with stress means you need to learn how to relax. Do whatever it takes to master relaxation. That's the key. (TIMExplore.com)

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