Goal Attainment through Stress Management

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Stress  ManagementStress management wouldn’t seem like something that would be a part of goal setting but it could be the diversity between you attaining them and not attaining them. There is positive stress and negative stress.

Positive stress adds anticipation and excitement to life, and we all thrive under a certain amount of stress. Deadlines, confrontations, competitions, and even our frustrations and sorrows add depth and enrichment to our lives.

Our goal is not to get rid of stress but to learn how to control it and how to use it to help you attain your goals.

Insufficient stress acts as a depressant and may leave you feeling bored or dejected; on the other hand, excessive stress may leave you feeling all mixed up inside.

What you need to do is find the optimal level of stress which will individually motivate but not overwhelm each of us.

Optimal Stress

There is no single level of stress that is optimal for every person. We are all individual creatures with unique necessities. As such, what is distressing to one may be a joy to another.

And even when we agree that a particular event is distressing, we are likely to differ in our physiological and psychological responses to it. That’s just human nature.

The person who loves to arbitrate disputes and moves from job site to job site would be stressed in a job that was stable and routine, whereas the person who thrives under stable circumstances would very likely be stressed on a job where duties were highly varied.

Also, our personal stress necessities and the amount which we can tolerate before we become distressed changes with our ages.

It has been found that most illnesses are related to unrelieved stress; for instance, bowel disorders, anxiety disorders, etc.

If you are experiencing symptoms of stress, you have gone beyond your optimal stress level; you need to reduce the stress in your life and/or improve your ability to manage it.

Stress symptoms include, but are not limited to:

  • Hair falling out
  • Anxiety attacks
  • Fatigue
  • Headaches
  • Increase of appetite
  • Loss of appetite

Managing Stress

Identifying unrelieved stress and being aware of its effect on our lives is not adequate for reducing its harmful effects. Just as there are many sources of stress, there are many possibilities for its management.

However, all need work in order to be efficient. Changing the source of stress and/or changing your reaction to it. So you might be wondering how do you do it? Let me show you.

1. Become aware of your stressors and your emotional and physical reactions.

  • Notice your stress and its beginnings. Don’t ignore it. Don’t gloss over your problems.
  • Determine how your body responds to the stress. Do you become nervous or physically upset? If so, in what specific ways?
  • Determine what events stress you out. How much do these events mean to you?

2. Recognize what you can change.

  • Can you change your stressors by avoiding or eliminating them completely?
  • Can you reduce their intensity over time?
  • Can you devote the time and energy necessary to making a change (goal setting, time management techniques, and delayed gratification strategies may be helpful here)?
  • Can you shorten your exposure to stress by taking a break, or leaving the physical premises?

3. Reduce the intensity of your emotional reactions to stress.

Your perception of danger and/or fears physical danger or emotional danger, and fears of failure etc, triggers stress.

  • Are you expecting to please everyone because I’m telling you that you can’t?
  • Are you viewing your stressors in exaggerated terms and/or taking a difficult situation and making it a disaster?
  • Work at adopting more moderate views; try to see the stress as something you can cope with rather than something that overpowers you.
  • Are you overreacting and viewing things as absolutely critical and urgent all the time? Do you feel you must always come out the winner in every situation?
  • Try to temper your excess emotions. Put the situation in perspective. Do not labor on the negative aspects of everything find a positive in them if you can
  • Take personal time to evaluate your surroundings clearly
  • Exercise a little bit or take a walk daily
  • Take a deep breath when overly stressed and count backwards from 10

5. Build your physical reserves.

  • Eat well-balanced, nutritious meals.
  • Maintain your ideal weight or appearance.
  • Get enough sleep. Be as consistent with your sleep schedule as possible.
  • Avoid nicotine, excessive caffeine, and alcohol.
  • Mix leisure with work. Take breaks and get away when you can.

6. Maintain your emotional reserves.

  • Develop some mutually supportive friendships/relationships.
  • Expect some frustrations, failures, and sorrows and let them go.
  • Pursue realistic goals which are meaningful to you, rather than goals others have for you that you do not share because they won’t succeed.
  • Always be kind and gentle with yourself be your own best friend.

Posted in: Goal Setting

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