Gary's Guidance: Overcoming Stress

September 2013

Previously, I wrote about Taking a Look at Stress and below are some ways in which you can deal with stress.  The following are excerpts from my seminar on Planned Spontaneity:  An Oxymoron for Stress Management:

  • Exercise – do a physical activity you enjoy or take a daily walk.
  • Be realistic – try to avoid being perfect and avoid unrealistic expectations of yourself or others.  Avoid making promises to others that can’t be kept.
  • Take on one thing at a time – try to break down tasks beginning with the easiest to accomplish.  When finished, engage in positive self-talk by saying that you did a good job and feel good about it.  Avoid multi-tasking.
  • Make time for hobbies and interests. It is important to distract yourself into an activity that you enjoy.  Be sure to schedule time for your hobbies by writing them down on your calendar/planner as you are more likely to follow through with them.
  • Share your feelings – avoid internalizing or stuffing your feelings inside.  Seek out positive and supportive people you know and trust so you can let out what you are feeling.
  • Eat and drink sensibly by simply drinking water rather than engage in excessive eating or consuming alcohol when experiencing stress.
  • Give your mind a break – take 10-15 minutes a day to just sit, take relaxing breathes, and fantasize about something pleasant.
  • Enjoy music – especially play music that you enjoy to change a feeling and shift into a better mood.

Although each of the above ways to manage stress can be done in combination with others, one can not fully escape stress as it is simply part of the human condition of living.   But being mindful by remembering to take time to practice any one of the above stress busters will be a beginning to reducing some of the stress we encounter.

Gary Kozick, LCSW

(215) 510-8901