Worried? We all have stress in our lives. Even the calmest person has moments of anxiety over something. I manage my own with a combination of healthy appointments. My cocktail of choice is regular exercise, massage, chiropractic appointments, and acupuncture. It is a juggling act, but in order to take myself seriously, I have to treat myself seriously. It is so easy to worry, not quite as easy to stop. Yet, we can use our own fears and worries as tools toward change. We can take a detour.
Taking a detour from stress does not mean that we somehow magically no longer have any. It does mean that there is more than one method to stay calm, to focus, and to promote self-care. If what you are doing currently is not working, what else can you do that may? Keep in mind that we often “inherit” stress. We pick up on the energy of those around us. So, surrounding yourself with positive people within supportive and constructive environments contributes to your own overall aura. When someone responds rudely, is in a hurry, or is very demanding of us, we may in turn be exhibiting their stress as we process our own responses to it.
How do we take a detour from stress? The best way is to be mindful of where we are positioning that stress in relation to our own thoughts. Making our stress work for us, we need to lean into it in such a way that we are using the momentum that it creates, the anger it provokes, to challenge ourselves to take positive action in our lives. Essentially, stress can be a catalyst toward change, because when we get annoyed, bothered, or freaked out, we have a choice to retreat and cower, or to step up and let that dissatisfaction provoke a better way to proceed. A detour. Plan B. A decision.
How do we step up to stress?
Try This: To take your stress detour take a moment to envision all the things that you worried about yesterday and in the recent past that you are still carrying around today. Imagine that every worry is a large, heavy rock that you are carrying around with you. Close your eyes and picture yourself putting all these stress rocks down…one by one…you are no longer carrying them around. Let them go. Hold onto only what you must. Do you feel lighter, or more energetic without yesterday’s baggage? Stress that paralyzes us or makes us procrastinate is negative stress. Believe it or not, there is such a thing as positive stress. Being unhappy about something and worrying about it proactively allows you to take that worry, channel that anger, and come up with a creative and meaningful next stress step solution to change your patterns and your reactions.
Now, for the power step…
Take a stress step. Take that detour forward.
Picture how you want today to unfold. Can you paint a picture of a more carefree day? Carefree does not mean careless. It means lighter, more in touch with your realities. Still stressed about something? Draw a picture of it. Now crumble up that piece of paper and throw it away. How likely is it that what you are worrying about is actually going to happen? What is the worst thing that will happen if it does? Just being in sync with your feelings about what stressors are in your life is helpful in combating that specific worry and in pushing past the fears that are tightly gripping you.
If you were not afraid, what would you do? Then do that. It’s a choice. Try one thing each day that you are willing to do to eliminate stress and to take a stress step into what you are most afraid of. Then document your progress. Become aware of your responses versus your reactions and what results you achieve mindfully using one or the other. Be willing to allow imperfection into your life in favor of stressing less and with more intention. Find your own cocktail of what calms and rewards you. Stress stepping ahead is a personal commitment to using what may not be working for you to build upon what can.
Take the detour. What’s next?
Randi Levin, CPC, founder & CEO, Randi Levin Coaching – is a nationally recognized transitional life strategist, Fortune 500 keynote, author, and reinvention expert. Randi Levin Coaching supports women in becoming legends in their own lives! Legacy is a mindset and a muscle that when flexed can become a power tool for change and redirection in the current moment. Randi is a catalyst toward a shift in perspectives in regard to fear, growth, purpose and overall success—all key elements of her Signature GPS Coaching System. Randi Levin Coaching is widely quoted and featured in top media outlets. She is a featured expert for Thrive Global, DivorceForce, The Three Tomatoes, Women for One, and Better After 50. Her workshops have been featured in The Wall Street Journal and you may have seen her in HuffPost, Reader’s Digest, Business Insider, American Express OPEN Forum, and Working Mother Magazine. She is regularly a guest on top podcasts and radio shows. Randi is a contributing author in the anthology series Get RESULTS!