“It’s not stress that kills us, it’s our reaction to it.” ―Hans Selye
Stress is so normal that we usually feel it every day or most days. This is true of the people who work, who stay at home doing chores and childcare, who study, who combine these tasks and have to do even more. But what does it do to us when stress is such a big part of our lives?
When it is not managed properly, stress can have a negative impact on physical and mental health. This is one of the better documented effects: we know very well that stress, too much of it or too intense of an experience, hurts us physically, mentally, emotionally. It can contribute to diseases like heart problems or depression.
Some people seem to have a naturally sunny disposition, and stress doesn’t appear to stick to them. But for most of us, stress management becomes an important part of our daily routines to take care of our health. Just as we need to brush our teeth and wash our hands, we need to do stress management, and here is how to get inspired.
Stress management involves working with your mind and your emotions. It is about making yourself more resilient. This doesn’t mean you will avoid stress. That’s rarely a goal you can achieve. Instead, it’s about reducing the impact it has, making it work in your favor, and also turning it into a tool for growth.
You can reframe the stressful situation. See it as a challenge, not as a problem. How will you solve the puzzle? How will you overcome? Challenge yourself to do better and see it as a game or an adventure when you can.
A way to make the stress work for you is to channel it towards useful things. Work your stress out through exercise or a hobby. Find things that actively help you relax and that inspire you to work out the restlessness.
You can use the situations that cause you stress as learning opportunities. When do you feel more relaxed or more worried? What do you love and dread? Stress can serve as a compass that helps you make decisions and understand your own needs.
Stress management can help you in many ways. It is sure to improve your health, physically and mentally. It also becomes a powerful tool for making your life better.