I’ve learned that managing my stress is one thing that I just cannot afford to take a break on. This is something that comes up consistently for me...because I hadn’t been persistent about working on it. I’d get through one stressful thing, and celebrate conquering it without analyzing why it was so stressful in the first place, and not evaluating how I can have a better hold on stress.
I write what is useful to me, and I share to encourage others. Hope this helps.
What/who has you worked up? If it or they can be eliminated, or if you can reduce your time around them - do so.
But what if you can’t? For example, if your child stresses you, well...you can’t give them away. So, what to do? First, check yourself. Ask, “Why are they bothering me so much?” Is it their behavior or is it time for some self-reflection? Your increased irritability is not their fault. The better choice is to investigate what REALLY has you so irritable, and address and/or eliminate that.
If it is another person whom you can not eliminate, I recommend a conversation if the other party is mature enough. If not, reduce your time around them, or try an exercise from number 2.
Personally, I carry stress in my body...particularly evidenced by chest pains. I literally cannot afford to NOT manage my stress. Therapy (#4), along with prayer and body awareness has helped me tremendously with this.
Slow down. Prepare in advance. These are 2 things that help start my day off smoothly. My best mornings are when I wake up early, run a hot bath, play my devotion (the Abide app), and talk to God before starting my day. Of course, I have to plan to do this successfully, but I never regret it when I do. I’m my best self when I’m not rushed. Be aware of your time.
Also, be aware of who and what invades your space. Your space is your responsibility.
I’m so glad I was already seeing a therapist when my mom passed. Had I not been, I’m not so sure I would have had the strength to follow through. I urge you not to wait until a crisis to tend to your mental health. Your mental health is just as important as and impacts your physical health.
It can be easy to fall into the caretaker role, while neglecting yourself. Your community deserves a healthy you, and you deserve a healthy community.
This started off as an Instagram post (hence the multiple graphics), but I wanted to expand on the topic here on my website. If you know someone who can benefit from these tips, please share.
Brianna Rodgers, LAMFT 😊