Life is stressful enough without banks collapsing, homes being repossessed and jobs being wiped out. When I was writing Stress – The Essential Guide I realised how often we make life for ourselves.
There are so many things in life that we cannot do anything about, such as divorce, bereavement, caring for someone who is seriously ill, losing your home, or even moving, changing jobs, or seeing the kids off to nursery or uni. These kind of stresses will always happen, as well as the niggling day to day ones like traffic jams and call centres.
But human beings seem to make life more difficult for themselves. For instance, sometimes people who are working long hours may be doing so because of their fear of failure or perfectionist tendencies.
When you are having a genuinely difficult time do you accept help from others, say no when you just can’t do any more, ensure that you still do everything in a set way (that could make life more stressful) or stick to fixed beliefs or judgements that are unhelpful?
By looking at your own behaviour and trying to let some of your habits go you can actually avoid making a bad situation worse.
There are plenty of other things that you can do including exercising, eating healthily, allowing yourself time and space alone, relaxation, and therapies like massage which are very relaxing.
It is too difficult to change your lifestyle when stress is at its worst. It is better to try to arm yourself against stress by taking up exercising, eating well and learning to relax when times are good. Otherwise you may find that drinking alcohol may become your only stress relief, and unfortunately that can make matters worse.
Stress – The Essential Guide costs £8.99 and is published by Need2Know, http://www.need2knowbooks.co.uk