Over the last 6 months, I’ve gotten serious about learning how to manage my stress better and in that, I’ve taken away a lot of tips that have kept me more mindful and allowed me to handle stress in new ways without it reeking havoc in my life or taking me prisoner to outside circumstances I can’t control. One of the most common misconceptions about stress is that we need to figure out how to reduce is but stress usually relates to things outside of our control so instead of trying to reduce it, it’s more important to learn how to manage it! So when life happens, you’re equipped.You ready to dive in?
I know I told you I’ve turned into a yogi lately but it’s played a key role in helping me to manage stress and to learn how to be more grounded, less influenced by what’s happening in my world. I was resistant to yoga for years and when I finally surrendered and allowed myself to just accept and be present, it changed my life. I try to practice multiple times a week and do a 10 minute flow before bed almost every night just to ground myself, breathe fully, and move my body. There is something about committing an hour of time to focusing on breath and moving your body in ways it desires to be moved and challenged.
2.) Define your “Big 3”:
Do you ever finish your day and wonder what you actually accomplished? Are you sick of clocking out and feeling like you didn’t move the needle? You’re likely working IN your business and not ON it and busying yourself with tasks that aren’t contributing to the big picture. Each day, I’ll write down the three things I need to accomplish and then I will block my schedule leaving pockets of down time and aligning my goals with the big 3 things I need to do for that day. Instead of feeling like a failure because I didn’t finish a to-do list that is 30 tasks deep, I feel like I get more done, stay more aligned with my big goals, and are more focused.
3.) Do a brain dump:
I suck at shutting my brain off. I’m the girl who gets the best ideas in the shower or at 10PM at night in bed. I’ve got so many balls in the air that I often find myself trying to remember what I was JUST thinking about. Can you relate? One thing I was struggling with was shutting my mind off at the end of the night and so I started to do brain dumps. Either grabbing a piece of paper or opening up a google drive doc and just typing out all the things I need to get done in my life (bonus points for using a drive doc so you can tag people on your team who can take some of those items off of your plate!) Write down literally everything in your head and just get it all down on paper – enjoy that feeling of freedom as those thoughts feel seen and you now have a clear head.
4.) Schedule in self-care:
Trust me, I say this with so much love: self-care is not found in bath salts. Self care looks different for everyone and it’s not just about sipping wine in a bubble bath. It’s important as you get busy and stressed to really break, take care of yourself, and fill your cup back up. We’ve all heard the saying that you can’t pour from an empty cup and that’s true. Whether you need to schedule a massage or manicure, hire a cleaning lady or food service company, go for a walk, schedule a girls night, get a babysitter and take a long nap, make sure you’re scheduling in downtime and keeping it routine – especially when things get busy for you.
5.) Get good sleep:
Sleep needs to become a non-negotiable for you. We started getting serious about our sleep and it really started to show in our lives. From going to bed at a consistent time each night (if you’re wondering, we go to bed around 9:30 every night) to not screens in the bedroom to sipping magnesium before hitting the hay and making sure our room is a peaceful haven for us. When you get stressed, sleep can usually be the first thing to go on your list but if you can continue to stay routinized in this and get your rest, it can help lower your cortisol levels and keep you energized to manage any outside stressors with grace.
So there you have it, 5 ways I’ve been focusing on managing stress better! It’s funny, after we did our testing for fertility and I found out my cortisol levels were off the charts, I started to see stress in a new way. In fact, I wasn’t feeling stressed at the time. I felt clear, in control of my business, and excited about what’s next but when I started to realize that maybe I had just gotten used to operating under high stress, I started to see that each day I have an energy bank and I can choose where my energy is going.
I want my focus to go to positive, impactful, intentional facets of my life and stress isn’t serving me (or anyone else.) I started to let go of more things, be more forward in conversations, set better boundaries, and pay attention to the stressors on my life and how they are impacting me, my work, and my life. I can’t wait for you to tune in and learn not only how to survive through stress– but thrive.