Unfortunately, there are many times in our lives when stress creeps in and causes great angst. Life is busy and work, kids, school and responsibilities can seem overwhelming at times.
74% of UK adults have felt so stressed at some point over the last year they felt overwhelmed or unable to cope.
81% of women said this compared to 67 percent of men. 83% of 18-24 year-olds said this compared to 65 percent of people aged 55 and over. (Source: mentalhealth.org.uk)
Do you feel that your stress is getting you down?
Here are some tips to help deal with stress and its after-effects.
Stress has become a major cause of anxiety and panic attacks. If not dealt with, it can have an incapacitating effect on your life. More often than not, most people with A-type personalities are prime candidates for stress induced symptoms. The perfectionism they seek in everything they do never quite measures up to their expectations. This is not a perfect world; and it’s time those who live in it realize they aren’t perfect either, and nor should they be.
Most people deal with stress in different ways; either they ignore the initial problem which caused it; retreat within themselves or fall apart. However, those who recognize the signs nip it in the bud before it completely takes over. Using simple exercises can relieve the onset of stress. For example: While sitting at your desk at work, breathing exercises can bring you back to a calm state. Going outside for some fresh air also helps.
Walking or running for 20 minutes can release endorphins which relieve stress. Listening to classical music lowers the blood pressure and brings calm within.
Sometimes, however, stress reveals itself in other ways. Light headedness, an inability to focus, feelings of pressure and palpitations are all symptoms of stress. Moreover, continued stress can produce anxiety, panic, and the fight or flight syndrome. Here is one such case of how stress can simply overwhelm and, in some cases, debilitate.
A secretary was called into her administrator’s office, which was quite large and comfortable. As she was taking dictation, she suddenly found it hard to breathe; began to lose focus; and a queasy feeling in her stomach emerged. She could no longer concentrate and left the room suddenly.
Unbeknown to her, she had just experienced an anxiety attack brought on by stress. However, while there was nothing stressful going on at the time, she later identified the cause. An unpleasant thought had entered her mind while she was taking dictation, causing fear to take over forcing her to leave the office.
Upon further examination, it was determined the stress in her home life simply became too much, and filtered its way in to her working day.
This happens all too often and vice versa, where work stresses can filter in to your family life causing arguments. health issues and in some cases total disconnection from your loved ones!
If stress is getting you down, examine the cause. Determine the origin and discuss it with a professional or a loved one. Stress, if not acted upon, can cause serious health problems. Avoid it wherever and whenever you can.
You can learn more about reducing stress in our Personal Transformation Mastery self-study course.
If you need any further help reducing stress or creating healthier habits to move you towards success you can email me or take a look at the services we offer here. Using the FLOAT system we take our clients from Chaos to Calm in both life and business and help you create the success you deserve.
You can also come and join us over on Facebook in The Positivity Hub, where we talk all things, mindset, confidence and positivity.
Have you ever had a negative thought? Of course you have, we all have negative thoughts. We have between 50-70,000 thoughts each and every day. Have you ever uttered it out loud, even in jest? Of course you have. Negative thinking can be damaging not only to our self-esteem, but can begin a cycle of thought and behaviour which negatively impacts our own perception of events in our lives.
Perhaps you’ve been assigned a special project at work. You’re confident in taking it on, but upon completion you notice one tiny error. You begin to berate the way in which you handled the project, even though the error was not significant. While your boss is telling you what a great job you’ve done, you begin to make excuses for it. Your negativity has belittled the entire project, and magnified one area of it.
What steps can you take to avoid this pattern? Take a step back and look at the project objectively. Not only did you complete it in an efficient manner, but it will become the template for future projects. Forget about the mistake; think about what you’ve achieved. Focus on what went right, not what went wrong.
The holidays are approaching, and you need to begin cleaning the whole house ready. You look around and decide it’s just too much; you can’t do it; why bother. Stop! Take a deep breath and consider dividing up the tasks. Get your family involved to help by giving each one a specific job. Once you begin the process of prioritising, you will feel better and it will get done.
You’ve started a diet before your holiday. One day, you have a craving for a particular dessert. You quickly decide your diet is over, and it wasn’t worth the effort. You walk over to the mirror and utter to yourself, “I’m fat, and there’s nothing I can do about it.”
Setting yourself up for failure by thinking negatively about the way you look does not solve the immediate problem. Instead, admit to cheating; promise you’ll try harder, and allow positive thoughts to guide you through.
Improving your self-talk and re-framing your beliefs relating to it can help you think your way to a better you.
Once you discover the belief that is holding you back you can start to challenge and re-frame it.
Here are some questions you can ask yourself to challenge that belief
- Why do I believe this is true?
- Where did these beliefs come from?
- What is it that’s holding me back from achieving success?
- What can I do to change it?
Re-framing your thoughts in to positive ones is incredibly powerful and once you’ve cracked the habit of doing it, it becomes easier to catch those daily negative thoughts, stop them and give yourself a more positive thought in its place.
You can learn more about creating more positive thoughts in our Personal Transformation Mastery self-study course.
If you need any help creating better, healthier thoughts to move you towards success you can email me or take a look at the services we offer here. Using the FLOAT system we take our clients from Chaos to Calm in both life and business and help you to create the success you deserve.
We all experience it at one time or another; this trespasser called stress. It is perhaps the number one cause of most health problems in our society today. Here we explore 6 ways you can deal with the stress of life in a healthy and effective manner.
* Talk about the problems you are experiencing with friends, loved ones or a professional. Keeping everything bottled up will only create more problems later on. Talking is a great way to release the inner stresses of a situation and help you gain a better perspective on the situation that is the cause of your stress.
* Exercise often. Go for a walk for 20-30 minutes either every day or at least every other day. Exercise relieves tension and produces a calming effect. Perhaps joining a gym would work better for you. Remember it needs to be something that you will do regularly.
* Yoga is not only a great form of exercise in general for creating body strength. It’s also well known for quietening the mind and creating calm. Sit in a quiet room alone and begin breathing exercises.incorporate meditation in this and you have a powerful combination for relieving stress in the mind and body.
* Music is known to calm the stress beast. Listen to something that either relaxes you or gets you up and motivated. This is a great distraction technique that works wonders.
* Healthy meals can become an important factor in limiting your stress. Ensure you eat three meals a day, and make an effort to avoid too much caffeine and sugar. We’ve all heard the term ‘hangry’ and we’ve all felt it too. Skipping meals isn’t good for either your physical or mental health. Too much caffeine will send your head in to a spin, it over stimulates the brain and can cause what I term as the fast spin on the washing machine affect.
* Sleep deprivation is a big cause of stress. Go to bed earlier. Seven to eight hours sleep can make all the difference when possible. I used to stay up later as it was the only time I got to myself when the kids were younger, but it wasn’t doing me any good in the long run. In fact it was having the adverse effect.
Coping with stress can be challenging. Every day you seem to be pulled in every direction, trying to accommodate others, living in what feels like chaos. The first priority is to take care of YOU. YOU are the thread that holds your family together. If you’re stressed, you won’t be much good to anyone. You need to fill your cup first. You need your cup to be over-flowing so that your over-flowing cup then fills your partners and your kids cups. If you fill theirs first, then there is nothing left for you.
Give yourself a break every now and then. Buy a new outfit; go see a movie; do something you’ve always wanted to do. Your family can take care of themselves for one day. Alone time is just as important to you as it is for everyone else. Think of yourself as a gas tank; eventually you will run out of fuel.
Laughter is a wonderful release. You’ve probably noticed those times when you’ve laughed so hard, you cried. This is probably due to the fact you haven’t laughed in a while, and the tension released through laughter is the best cure-all method for dealing with stress-related issues.
Avoid stressful situations whenever possible. If you are a working mom, it’s probably not the job but the people who are causing you the most stress. Take everything in your stride and remember that it’s not about you, it’s about them.
If you can’t finish a task, don’t worry about it. If dinner doesn’t turn out as you expected, improvise or get a take-away. We stress over so many things that really don’t matter! No-one is judging you anywhere near as much as you’re judging yourself, so give yourself a break and stop being so hard on yourself.
Life is too short; and stress can reduce it even further. Nothing is more important than your health or state of mind. Eleanor Roosevelt wisely said, “No one can make you a victim without your consent.” She was right; it is, after all, up to you.
If you’d like help managing your stress then feel free to book a FREE 30 minute call with me where we can discuss how I can help you further.
Do you want to become the most incredible, unstoppable version of yourself?
Then the answer is to overcome your FEAR. Your fear is what’s holding you back. Your fear is what is making you less capable and less formidable. And your fear is what’s taking away from your happiness and fulfilment.
It’s time we destroyed fear once and for all and unlocked our full potential!
Fear keeps us frozen and prevents us from moving forward. We are naturally risk averse which means we’d rather cling on to what little we have rather than go forward to win the big prizes.
To get around this, we can borrow some concepts from stoic philosophers and formalise them into a process that anyone can use to get over their crippling fears.
The process goes like this:
1.First, identify the goal or thing you would like to change. Let’s say you want to quit your job and start your own business.
2. Next, write down all the things you are afraid of and all the things that could go wrong. First, your partner might think you are irresponsible, and they might leave you. Second, your new business might fail and you’ll be left with debt. Third, your house might get repossessed. Fourth, you might end up vagrant. Fifth, your friends might laugh at you. Sixth, it might all go to plan but you find you hate your new position even more. You get the idea!
3.Now score each of those things on how realistically they are to happen. Would your partner really leave you? It’s unlikely unless there are problems in your marriage to begin with, so we can give that a ‘2’. Would you end up destitute or would you find another job, even if it’s a step down from what you were doing before? Give that one a ‘3’.
4.Next: do these things really matter? Score them 1-10. If your friends judge you… who cares? They will be judging you based on their own fears anyway.
5. Now, you’re going to go through that list again and you’re going to write down all the ways you could cope with the things that go wrong. These are your contingency plans and the things that you could do to cope. For instance, if you ended up broke you could get benefits, you could dip into your savings, you could ask your parents for help, you could take on a part time job. If your partner left you, you could still fulfill that dream of travelling the world.
6. Then go through the list one more This time, write down all the ways you can mitigate the risk so that it is less likely to happen. Worried about getting into debt? Then write a business model that doesn’t involve a big upfront expense and bootstrap your way to success. Worried about leaving your job? Then start your business in your free time first.
Now you’re going to do something else: you’re going to think about the worst-case scenario if you don’t follow through with your plan.
It might be that you end up stuck in a job you hate. That one day you’ll be 80 years old and you’ll look back on your life and feel that you never made anything of it. That your body and your mind atrophied from lack of challenge or experience.
What’s worse? I know how I’d feel!
Focus on what we discussed in the section on stoicism: bad things will happen. You can’t possibly avoid all bad things happening.
Meanwhile, you are only responsible for your own emotions. You can’t make everybody happy all of the time, so don’t even try. People pleasing is a total waste of time and does more harm than good, but that’s another subject for another day. What you need to focus on is accepting this reality and then just doing what you need to for your own emotional and psychological well-being.
How others react to your decision is up to them. But you can’t let that define your actions.
You can’t hold on to things just the way they are. You can’t prevent bad things from happening. All you can do is live life to its fullest and richest right now. That’s why you have to take those chances.
If you need any help releasing your FEARS, this is something I do with all my clients. You can book a FREE 30-minute clarity call with me here. You can also come and join us in The Positivity Hub facebook group.
As a mum in business I get asked all the time – How do you manage your time and juggle running your business whilst the kids are at home?
It’s simple – BUT it hasn’t always been that way. When I first started out in business, I would dread the school holidays. My stress levels would rise just thinking about it and my anxiety went through the roof.
In all honesty I failed miserably in my first 6-week holiday period. I was miserable, I made my family miserable and my ‘mummy guilt’ was at an all time high. I was way too hard on myself (sound familiar), I tried to be perfect at everything and I very quickly realised that this was NOT how I EVER wanted another school holiday period to go.
SO, what did I do?
Firstly, I stopped being so god damn hard on myself. I changed my self-talk from ‘I’m a terrible mum and a useless business owner’ to ‘I am a great mum, my kids are happy, healthy and have everything they need. I am doing my best which IS good enough and my business is exactly where it needs to be.’
I then changed my daily routine to accommodate my kids and my business so that I could spend less time in my business and more time with the kids. This tool some mindset work and a shift in work pattern, but my god, the difference was AMAZING.
Here are a few things I now do that took me from Chaos to Calm and improved my routine significantly!
1) I get up earlier. Trust me, this one took a little while to adjust to. I’m not a natural morning person. My husband will vouch for that! Getting up earlier gives me the head space I need to prepare for the day. I now do this during term-time as well and it’s been a game changer for me. In the holidays I have two hours to work before the kids get up and I get a surprising amount of work done in these few hours. In fact, it’s become my most productive time of the day. It turns out I am a morning person after all – I just told myself I wasn’t for all those years.
2) Time blocking has become my best friend. I now have set times that I work each day. They are 6am-8am, 9am-11am and 4pm-6pm. It took me a few holidays to get this one nailed and locked in, but my clients all know my block hours during the holidays, and it works brilliantly. The kids know when I’m working and when I’m ‘mum’.
3) My boundaries have always been set right from the very start of my business, but they are adjusted slightly for holidays times. I make sure my clients know them from the off, so there is no confusion and if they know from the start, your clients will accept them. So, make sure you know your boundaries and set them out straight away. Not doing so will almost certainly cause problems further down the line. I also make sure that my kids know my boundaries from the outset. We have a conversation about what is expected, what’s acceptable and what isn’t, so we all know where we stand.
4) Find an Associate who is willing to take on some ‘Associate work’ during the holiday season to take the pressure off and of course allow you some down time knowing that everything is ticking along nicely – You deserve a break just as much as everybody else.
5) Plan your daily activities with the kids. My two are 7 and 9 and they love going to the beach, going swimming and having picnics in the park. These are easy wins when the weather is good, but for the colder and wetter months it’s even more important to plan what your time with the kids is going to look like.
Time Management is one of my favourite topics – I can talk for hours about how to manage your time more efficiently.
I’ll just leave you with this………
We have 10080 minutes in a week. We spend on average 3360 of those minutes sleeping and 2400 working. That leaves us 4320 minutes each and every week.
Still think you don’t have enough time?
If you’d like help with your time management and want to learn how to time block effectively lets jump on a call.
There are very few people who could call themselves perfect and be right. Most of us need to build self confidence today, but the majority just either ignore the issues or concentrate on the negatives: stress, worry, jobs, money problems and relationship issues. Concentrating on these areas drains our self confidence rather than improving it.
If you could improve your self confidence you could make more money, look and feel better physically, or just be more relaxed with other people. Below there are five simple techniques that have been proved to help build self confidence today.
1. Talk to yourself. It sounds crazy but it works. All of us have a running monologue constantly in our heads, whether we realize it or not. Everything we see, hear, or touch sparks off an immediate dialog in our thoughts.
For those who lack confidence this monologue is filled with negative messages many of which are the negative side of adverts from television, radio, advertisement boardings, newspapers, and just overhearing other people talk.
These negative thoughts literally suck energy from our minds and bodies and block the flow of positive messages. We need to hear the positive messages as they will build self confidence today and raise our self esteem. Take control. Use your inner thoughts to talk to yourself in a positive manner, as often as you can.
As an example one of my regular sayings is “I like myself, I like myself, I like myself”. I just repeat it for a couple of minutes. It sounds cheesy, but does build self confidence today – Try it. I bet that if you go to the mirror right now and repeat out loud “I like myself!” 50 times, it will be impossible to keep from smiling.
2. Dress as smartly and as classy as you can. You won’t feel at your best if you don’t look your best. You will be amazed at just how much more confidence you will have just looking your best. It just feels good when you are wearing your best clothes, are well groomed, and are surrounded by a clean environment. So what if it is Saturday, you need to build self confidence today not next week. Put on your nice clothes, get the car washed, style that hair! A hairdresser once told me “Everyday is show time!”. Forget about saving clothes for special occasions. I used to do this all the time and ended up never wearing half of my wardrobe for fear of spoiling it….what’s that all about. Every day is a special occasion, so get wearing those beautiful clothes you’ve never dared to wear!
3. Increase your self esteem even more by giving thanks to what you are, how you look, and what you are doing. Say “thank you” to yourself to everything you see, all whom you meet, and each smile that you receive.
4. Stand or sit correctly: How you stand sends out a message to the World, and in turn, back to you. This results in improving how you feel about yourself and will build self confidence today and every day.
There is scientific evidence that shows how posture affects our mood. Do not slouch. Slouching produces a down mood. By slouching you are telling the world and yourself it doesn’t matter, you don’t matter. Standing tall and upright will actually lift your mood. Help build up your confidence by pulling back those shoulders, stop that slouch, and walk proud.
5. Smile. Just smile and things seem better somehow. Practice smiling regularly and get your facial muscles used to the physical act of smiling.
Go to the mirror and smile – make yourself. Not a grimace, but a proper smile. If you don’t think you can try this:
- Open your eyes as wide as you can – (try and get your eyebrows right up to you hair line)
- Slightly open your mouth
- Pull the corners of your mouth back towards your ears (If your not sure pull them back with your fingers so you know what it feels like then try again without your fingers).
- Repeat 50 times. Get your facial muscles used to smiling and you will smile more and encourage smiles from others. This will make you feel happier and with that you’ll build self confidence today.
To find out more about how you can build your own self-confidence go to our website or find us on Facebook