No more stress please

If you stress, you can change the situation.

Ways to change the situation:                                                    Examples:

Avoid the stressor
  • Say no to requests that will cause more stress
  • Limit time spent with stressful people
  • Limit situations that are stressful. Take the more scenic road instead of the highway to work.
  • Avoid conversation topics that are upsetting.
Alter the stressor
  • If a person is causing the stress, try to talk to the person in a caring fashion to help change the situation.
  • Change your own behavior to help or offer compromise to the situation
  • Set limits on your time and tell others what work you need to get done
  • Plan enough time for tasks

    Ways to change your reaction:                                                      Examples:

Adapt to the stressor
  • When caught in a situation you can’t change, find something positive about it. While waiting an extra hour at the doctor’s office, take out your computer and finish a task or plan next month’s menus
  • Review what is stressing you. If possible, change standards if they are too high.  Maybe you are responsible for collecting items to be auctioned at your child’s school. You would like 50 items but can only get 30. Can you adjust your own expectations?
  • Focus on the good things that are happening to get through the stressful situation.
Accept the stressor
  • When you have no control over a situation, focus on how you respond to the situation.
  • Look for the positive factors in the situation
  • Talk to trusted friends and share the stressful situation
  • Forgive yourself and others and move forward

Information in chart taken from here.

  1. The American Heart Association recommends talking to yourself in a positive fashion. An example would be, I have handled a situation like this before and had a good outcome. I can work on this one step at a time. Negative self-talk increases stress. This includes thoughts of hate and everything going wrong.(8)


  1. Since between 75-90 percent of all doctor’s office visits are for stress related issues take good care of your health.(4) Regular exercise if approved by your physician, has been shown to decrease tension, improve sleep and stabilize mood.(9) Planning and maybe even making your meals and freezing those ahead of time may help reduce stress and prevent stress related eating.


  1. Deep breathing and meditation helps. Click here for techniques to use to get your started.

Get professional help when needed. The Cleveland Clinic advises people to call their physician when the following occur:

  •     Experience a marked decline in work/school performance
  •     Have excess anxiety
  •     Misuse alcohol or drugs
  •     Are unable to cope with demands of daily life
  •     Have irrational fears
  •     Have an obsessive preoccupation with food and fear of becoming obese with no relationship to actual body weight
  •     Experience significant change in sleeping or eating habits
  •     Have persistent physical ailments and complaints
  •     Have suicidal thoughts or urge to hurt others
  •     Engage in self-mutilation, self-destructive or dangerous behavior
  •     Have a sustained withdrawn mood or behavior(10)

(Note if a person is in danger of hurting themselves or others call for immediate emergency assistance. In most places in North America the telephone number is 911. Know the emergency number for your location.)
Remember that stress can be harmful to your health. Work on ways to handle your stress in a healthy way.


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