Stress Relief - Tips to Use Stress and Anxiety to Your Advantage

More people live in a constant state of stress while others battle it now and then. Many more would like to know how to control and channel it constructively when it does strike, without having to resort to drugs. There's a New Age wisdom born of Old World advice and that's turning a negative into a positive. The good news is you can apply this to stress management.

To be in the grip of stress is not fun. Like being plugged into a source of electricity that's running at the wrong current, it drives you antsy and clouds your thinking. You can't remove stress from your life permanently. But what if you could use stress instead of becoming a victim of it?

Firstly, think of stress in an opposite way. It can be a spring-board for positive action. It can be your radar that alerts you to the fact that something has to change for the better. This can be the circumstance itself or the way you're reacting to it.

Here's some thought techniques that will transform stress from a strain to a game:

Sanity check - is the situation really that bad, or are you over-reacting, thinking the worst, expecting the worst. Are you freaking out about something you can't change? Or worse still, are you overlooking an opportunity to learn from this experience?

Motivator - the situation has been simmering for some time. Now it's come to a head like a boil about to burst. You know it because you feel terrible. Doom is looming. Okay the problem-solving part can't be skirted around anymore or you'll be sick. So you finally take charge through sheer will-power.

Help inducer - It's human nature to come to the aid of someone in distress. So why not take advantage of it? You could try the all out approach. Charge towards the center of the room, hands gripping your hair by the roots and with eyes bulging say "I can't take it anymore!". Or if acting the part doesn't suit your mild nature, try looking sad, forlorn, even bring tears to your eyes (for females) or slap the palm of your hand on your chest and list to one side (for males). This is almost sure to bring out the savior in those around you.

Springboard for change - if the thing that causes you stress keeps recurring and that's all you ever seem to get from it, maybe it's time for a rethink. Do I really want this situation or thing in my life when all I get from it is a gut ache, a dry mouth, a palpitating heart and I can't even think straight? You might resent feeling this way but it shows signs of being a wake-up call. Something's got to give or you'll give. That's give up or give into it. Is that what you want?

Self discovery - when you experience stress your buttons are being pressed. You may think you know all your buttons by now but maybe you need reminding. Maybe there's a hot button inside you that you weren't even aware of. If you know your reactive buttons and what's likely to trigger them you can be ready next time round.

When the situation occurs again you know how you'll react. In so knowing, it can blunt the impact of the stress reaction. You may even work through a way to avoid it happening again. Or it could force you to change the way you think about it so it doesn't white-ant you. But when stress does its work at the physical level, there's not much you can do except dilute its effect. How?

Try these approaches for size -

Suddenly you have the fuel to 'power walk' You've been meaning to do more exercise, well now you've got the nervous energy to literally walk it off. Even the dog (if you have one) will be amazed at how you're actually taking him for a walk.

Eat less Some people eat more when they're bored, rather than when they're stressed. Most get put off their food and lose weight. You've wanted to shed a few kilos but never seem to accomplish it. Now you don't want to lose weight through malnutrition. But since you're off your food because of the tension in your tummy, that too-healthy salad doesn't look so boring anymore. It's the only type of food your stomach will accept - especially if you suffer stress induced reflux. So nibble a carrot, munch an apple and indulge in alfalfa.

Sleep less Now this is a very short term fix. You should never allow yourself to build up a sleep deficit but if you find your stress level is keeping you bug-eyed in the middle of the night you may as well ride with it. If your eyes are burning so you have no inclination to read, try the opposite. Write to yourself. Write anything that comes to mind. The mind tends to be hyperactive during insomnia attacks in the middle of the night. So empty it out on the page like a bucket of nails -- noisy but spectacular.

There's nothing like refusing to play the victim of stress. Yes, stress left unchecked will ruin your health. But you can detect its early warning signs and use it to your advantage. We are so busy trying to control everything around us that we forget our own self-control and how to master ourselves in every situation. Never forget you are more than the sum of your parts.

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   Matilda Reich
   Online Marketing Consultant & Copywriter
   Infodesign Copywriting

© 2010 Matilda Reich Infodesign Copywriting™