Stress Reduction

3 Quick Tips to manage your stress and anger:

- Use your work-out time to process your stress and anger
– Use “On-the-Spot Tension Tamers”
– Have an “Emergency Exit Strategy”

I’d like to offer you 3 quick tips on managing the stress or anger in your life. Although I’ve written more extensively on this in other publications, this is just a quick, short list of three things you can do to tone things down a notch and improve your life.

First, make sure that you are exercising regularly. While you exercise, become aware of what is bothering you. As you focus on your stressors, let the physiological energy generated by your anger or angst be burned off by your body. Let the exertion cleanse you… body, mind and soul. This is what I call Anger Work.

Second, use “On-the-Spot Tension Tamers.” These are helpful when you are in the middle of a conflict or stressful meeting, or waiting in a long line. For example, you could use the hand-squeezing technique. You may let your anger out by simply rolling one or both hands up into a fist and squeezing. If you hide your hands, no one will notice. Alternatively, you could press down on the floor with your feet or tighten the muscles in some other part of the body. These are forms of isometric exercise which you can do when you are with people.

If the situation is especially aggravating, you are going to need to address it again during your work-out time; however these techniques should help you make it through the conversation or situation.

Third, have what I call an “Emergency Exit Strategy.” This only comes into play if you are in the middle of a conflict which is more than you can deal with at the moment. If you are ever in the middle of a conversation with a family member and feel like you are about to lose your temper and do or say something regrettable, here is my advice. Simply tell the person you are talking to that you need to take a break and finish the discussion later.

If you are in a professional situation where this doesn’t seem acceptable, then simply excuse yourself to go to the bathroom. If you are on the phone with the person, simply ask her to hold or tell her you will call her back. This may still seem odd, but excusing yourself for a few minutes to do some quick Anger Work or just cool down and let yourself think will put you back in control of yourself.

This trick of excusing yourself and walking away for a few minutes is not only helpful for people who have flaring temper problems, but also those who are used to being victimized and are trying to learn to create boundaries and stand up for themselves.

I hope you find these tips helpful in teaching your mind and body to work together to bring about greater health for yourself as a whole being.

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