Thursday, April 7, 2011

Stress Awareness Month

April is Stress Awareness Month.  What causes you stress in your life?  For most of you reading my blog I'm sure it's CLUTTER.  In honor of Stress Awareness Month here are a few proven stress reducers.  Number 1 is my favorite of course.

Proven Stress Reducers

1.  Simplify, Simplify, Simplify . . .

2.  Say "No!." Saying "no" to extra social activities, parties, projects and invitations you know you don’t have the time or energy for. 

3.  Get up fifteen minutes earlier in the morning.

4.  Prepare for the morning the evening before. Make lunches, put out clothes, etc.

5.  Procrastination is stressful.  Whatever you want to do tomorrow, do today; whatever you want to do today, do it now.

6.  Plan ahead. Have enough gas in your tank.  Make sure you have change for tolls or maps for a trip.  Don’t wait until you’re down to your last postage stamp to buy more, etc.

7.  Don't rely on your memory.  As soon as you make an appointment put it on your calendar.  Same with sports practices and games.

8.  Allow 15 minutes of extra time to get to appointments, school, practices, game, etc.

9.  Be prepared to wait. Bring a book or something to do while waiting.

10.  For every one thing that goes wrong, there are probably 1 or 5 blessings. Count’em!

11. Get enough sleep. If necessary, use an appointment on your cell phone to remind you to go to bed.  (I do, and it works)

12. Create order out of chaos. Organize your home and workspace so that you always know exactly where things are. Put things away where they belong and you won’t have to go through the stress of losing things.

13.  Breathe . . . I know I shouldn't have to remind you but if you stop to take deep breathes it really helps.  Try it.

14. Learn to live one day at a time.

15. Every day, do something you really enjoy.  Reading a book for 15 mins, surfing the internet, playing a board game with your kids, taking a bath, scrapbooking, etc.

16. Have a forgiving view of events and people. Accept the fact that we live in an imperfect world.

17. Schedule a realistic day. Avoid the tendency to schedule back-to-back appointments. Allow time between appointments.

18. Unplug your phone. Want to take a long bath, meditate, sleep, or read without interruption? Drum up the courage to temporarily disconnect. (The possibility of there being a terrible emergency in the next hour or so is almost nil).

The Serenity Prayer
God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.

Living one day at a time;
Enjoying one moment at a time;
Accepting hardships as the pathway to peace;
Taking, as He did, this sinful world
as it is, not as I would have it;
Trusting that He will make all things right
if I surrender to His Will;
That I may be reasonably happy in this life
and supremely happy with Him
Forever in the next.

--Reinhold Niebuhr
Trust in the LORD with all your heart
and lean not on your own understanding;
in all your ways acknowledge him,
and he will direct your paths.
Proverbs 3, 5-6

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