Stress is all about us; it is usually a part of every day. Just because it is a natural part of life doesn’t mean that we should permit stress to rule our lives. Chronic stress has proven to be very unhealthy, it can increase inflammation in the body, causing people to develop several health problems, both physically and mentally.
While stress in some form is practically unavoidable, chronic stress is dangerous. It needs to be managed, as it is not something that people can completely avoid. Managing stress is necessary for maintaining good health.
It is important to discover ways of how to stay calm amidst stressful situations and not be taken over by heightened feelings and thoughts when something does not go as you expect. There is much more to this than simply not losing your temper, as unexpressed (outwardly) emotion is probably even more damaging to your health.
The ability to handle stress, and to co-exist with it, but not allowing it to overcome them in the process has become an essential life skill for almost everyone, whether they consciously realise it or not.
Here are some effective ways to stay calm amidst highly-charged and stressful situations.
Take a Step Back
If you can afford to step back from the moment, do it. Unless it’s an emergency that needs to be attended to right away, you can always take a figurative step back, take a big deep breath and view things as objectively as possible.
An arms-length view can offer a clearer point of view, and taking a breather has proven to be really effective in letting people make better decisions. When in doubt, take a pause when you can. It usually helps enormously.
Reframe the Situation
The way we see things and frame events in our lives can be a great source of stress. That is why stress can be very subjective. What might cause someone else to stress easily could be fairly normal to you, or what could easily stress you out is quite normal to most others. Everyone has a different level of stress and different triggers.
How you perceive an event has a much bigger impact on your stress than the situation itself, and this is the essence of effective stress management. Reframing stressful situations by seeing things in a different light usually gives us the freedom and power to choose our own mindful response. This can provide an instant sense of calmness, helping you to avoid stress from taking over your life.
Cope with Some Humor
Try to see if the stressful situation can get some help from humor or a joke. It’s not appropriate all the time, but there are instances when being humorous can completely turn tense moments around. Having a sense of humor helps people easily cope with stress and bring peace and calmness to their minds. In fact, the people around you can equally benefit from this. Share a laugh or two and see how instantly stress dissipates. If you are on your own, try watching or listen to something you find funny on the TV, Youtube or radio.
Get Some Sleep
Lack of sleep will certainly make people more stressed than they already are. Getting sufficient sleep will underpin your efforts to keep your sense of balance and manage your stress.
You don’t have to go at it all by yourself. When stress eats up your peace of mind, getting another perspective usually helps. In fact, confiding in someone you trust can very easily provide a sense of relief and calm. Also, some catharsis could immediately unburden you of the extra load you’re carrying.
The next time you find yourself amidst a highly tense and stressful situation, turn to a friend you can confide in. Having moral and emotional support in times of need can help calm your racing mind.
It’s almost as if there’s nothing meditation can’t do. Meditation helps you in many ways when you are dealing with chronic stress. So many people give up at the thought of meditation, especially if they are doing it for the very first time. It is a practice that grows much easier with practice, to the point it can be almost automatic. To start making meditation work effectively in your life, you simply need to do it. Try meditation and see how it can effectively help you reduce and manage your stress.
Turn to A Positive Distraction
Not all distractions are created equal. There are positive distractions, and in times of stress, these are things that we can turn to for healthy coping. Do something that instantly lights you up and make you forget the tense situation that’s right in front of you. Make sure your distraction is not something that will cause more problems. Don’t let your stress become an excuse for poor choices.
Using drugs or alcohol to dull your feelings isn’t a solution. Even ‘good’ choices aren’t so good if they become addictive to a point where they negatively affect other areas of your life. If your distractions are keeping you from doing what needs to be done, it will compound your problems and your stress.