destressThe theory in this case is much easier said than done. Because we all act and react differently to stress, the mechanism to de-stress remains personal. The first step must always be a baby step with the primary aim of breaking the stress-anxiety cycle. Remember the opening statement, we are never too old to learn and we are never too old to change.

I have summarised 10 easy baby steps that I challenge you to adopt and apply to your daily routine. If you change your attitude and consciousness towards stress and you really understand the powerful mechanism behind stress, you have already taken the first step. Good luck with the rest!

Identify the stimulus or stimuli in your personal life responsible for your stress. Once you have made that identification confront that stimulus head on. Don’t run, don’t hide because the mechanism is already there and you can’t run or hide from it. Only when your conscious mind perceives the stimulus not to be threatening any longer, will the amygdala be de-activated. The two most common stress inducing stimuli in the workplace today, are unfinished tasks and unresolved conflict.

Start your day with a positive thought. So often will the mood or the platform for the new day be dictated by the first thought that we have when we wake up. Make it a positive one. Even if you have to cheat a little. Write something down the previous evening and put it next to your bed.

Verbalise your positive thought. Share it with your wife, girlfriend, boyfriend or talk to yourself in the mirror.

Apply that positive emotion. Smile at somebody in traffic, be friendly at the office phone somebody and say something nice.

Eat three fruits every day. Baby steps.

Exercise three times per week. Baby steps. Start slowly.

Stretch three times per day. Make time for yourself. Force yourself to relax for five minute every hour . Sit back and stretch.!

Stimulate yourself intellectually outside the work environment. Read, learn or start an interesting hobby. Don’t stagnate!

Learn to relax. Start doing yoga, listen to music or go for a massage. Spoil yourself.

Learn to be pro-active when it comes to your health. Don’t wait until you have neck and back pain before you visit your chiropractor. Don’t wait until you have muscle spasm before you visit your physiotherapist. Don’t wait for the symptoms of cold and flu to force you to go to your GP. Don’t work without a break until your body breaks down and forces you to rest. The health paradox of our time is negative reinforcement. We only rest or react once we are already sick or sore, therefore we reward our bodies for being sick. Reward your body for the positive things that it does for you. Reward yourself constantly!


How to de-stress

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