Proven Strategies to Prevent Stress, Part II
If you enjoyed Part I of my Proven Strategies to Prevent Stress post, read on to find out more techniques you can apply right now to transform the way you deal with stress. If you missed my first post in this two-part series, you can find it by clicking here.
Stress Strategy #4: Heighten Your Self-Awareness
How aware are you of your mental “defaults”? The following mental defaults might be sabotaging your stress-busting efforts – be on the lookout for these so you can stop them in their tracks:
The Inner Critic is that little (and sometimes LOUD) voice in your head that tells you all kinds of negative things, especially that you’re not good enough. Sound familiar? Almost all of us deal with some variation of the “inner critic” from time to time, and its voice can become louder – and even more obnoxious – when you’re under stress.
Assumptions – especially negative or unfounded ones – can set you up for failure before you even have a chance to address the situation. Does the belief that “it happened in the past, so it’s sure to happen again” take center stage in your mind when stress comes your way? Think about the consequences an assumption like this can have.
Negative Interpretations put the brakes on your ability to handle stress effectively. When you perceive other people or situations in a way that causes conflict or avoidance (misunderstandings, miscommunication), you’re not giving them – or yourself – a chance to work through the situation.
Limiting Beliefs affect us all in some way or another. Beliefs might be passed on to you by others, meaning that the belief does not involve your own personal experience. Limiting beliefs are a surefire way to hold you back in your life. For instance, if you think you won’t find a high-paying job or be successful without a college degree, your belief will keep you from living the fulfilling life you deserve – if you allow it.
Stress Strategy #5: Perception is Reality
Read the following statement slowly – and then read it again until it sinks down into your consciousness.
Perception IS reality.
To be your best self, create perceptions that embolden and empower you. How? Turn to your core beliefs – what you really hold to be true. I encourage you to take some time making a list of your core beliefs. What core beliefs do you have that relieve stress and empower you?
Some of my core beliefs are:
“I am divinely guided. With God I can get through anything and come out even stronger, wiser and in a better position on the other side.”
“I am meant for greatness.”
Identify your core beliefs and return to them the next time you encounter a stressful circumstance. Create a positive affirmation using your core beliefs, as I demonstrated above, to help set you in a positive mindset.
When you really need a boost, think about how your core values and beliefs have guided you through a stressful situation in the past. Reassure yourself that you can get through anything by remaining true to your values.
Of the “mental defaults” I talked about above, which one do you struggle with the most? More important, how do you use your core beliefs to transcend a negative or stressful situation? Share your experiences below!