In the spirit of sticking it to stigma and for Stress Awareness Day, we’re here to remind you that stress is a reaction – and there’s ways to manage when our bodies and minds feel overwhelmed, under pressure or under attack. Stress Awareness Day, or SAD if you’re a little twisted like us, is a day where we can take stock of our lives and our stress levels, and maybe reassess some reactors. So here are a few practical tips to give what’s also known as the silent killer a run for its money.
To start with, let’s all quit beating ourselves up for crumbling, acting out, or even bubbling over. It helps to take a second to think about the situation and what out of everything is within your control. Can you control your micromanaging boss? Unlikely…some people are just A-holes like that – or they enjoy exercising what little power they have in their lives. Can you control a threatening situation? Sadly, not always. Can you control everything that could possibly go wrong in a day? Nah, shit happens. One thing you can control is how you react.
It’s no surprise they call it the silent killer. It stealthily shows up in our skin, in our sleep, and in our relationships. Stress can also look completely normal and fine until one day…Bam! Snap!
SHIT HAPPENS TO ALL OF US.
We know that shit happens. It’s been happening since the beginning of time and shit’s not about to give up now. So what in your life causes your stress levels to increase? Is it drugs? Alcohol? Too much socialising? Things like this can be hard to give up or cut down on, because the high is too addictive. Hell, even coffee can get those anxiety monsters acting out. We all have our vices but if it compromises your inner peace you may want to have a word with yourself.
One of the most common stressors is the workplace. A small amount of pressure is normal but if your fight or flight is triggered then you’re sure to not be performing as the true badass you are. So take a break, step away from the screen, make a coffee, grab a biscuit and stick your middle finger up to the man (metaphorically not literally. WDN does not encourage getting fired). Seriously, though, did you know that you should be taking at least a 20-minute break every 6hrs? That doesn’t sound like a lot, but it could be exactly what you need when things get too much, so don’t skip it.
Prolonged stress can lead to huge issues down the line and trust us, Carol from HR cannot help you then. You owe it to yourself to make sure you stick to your boundaries. Whatever you need to do to take time for yourself, whatever feels good, do that.
How to do today the right way:
- Wake up and do NOT look at your phone! Starting the day on your emails or social media is setting the precedent for distraction and brain fog. Instead, go for a walk, do some yoga, or simply enjoy a book in bed.
- Take a second before brushing your teeth or having a shower just to write out all of your potential stress points. You can deal with them first on paper, which will really help you tackle them head-on in your day. We like to call it the ‘F*ck Off List’.
- Open your diary and schedule a FUN It doesn’t matter what it is or when. It might be dancing to music with your headphones during your lunch hour, taking the kids to the park after work or booking in a massage before bed (we recommend Urban). You will have something to look forward to and something to refresh you throughout your day
However you spend today, remember not to punish yourself. Take it easy and look after number one and the best version of you will be following close behind. And if anyone tells you to ‘chill out’, you have our full permission to add them to your Fuck Off List.
You can also check out our Support Page for some extra help when the going gets too tough.