We often think of stress as a negative feeling, and we would like to get rid of it altogether, however, this simply isn’t possible to achieve for most of us who are not Buddhist monks.
There are some things you can do to manage your stress though. You can deal with it in a positive “transformational” way.
Here are 5 strategies that will help you cope with stress much better and make sure you use your stress to fuel your successes, not losses.
1. Develop your self-awareness
We don't have to sit and expect stress to just go away, better choose to work with it. Stress always exposes our vulnerabilities or the areas where we lack in knowledge and insight. This is an undeniable gift. When our vulnerabilities are exposed, we are given direction on where we're most in need of self-improvement.
2. Increased Focus
Our fight-or-flight response releases chemicals that immediately increase our ability to focus on what is needed right now. Stress increases our ability to recall details and memories, which is helpful when placed in critical situations where our knowledge and problem-solving skills are being called upon.
3. Fulfilled Flow State
The flow state is a euphoric state of high performance and deep focus. Top performers consistently seek out mentors and coaches who can keep them under stress, because they recognize it improves performance. However, it is possible for anyone to feel like an expert in their own domain by entering this zone of peak performance.
You can use mild stress to help you do impressive things and actually improve your overall happiness.
4. Productive Deadlines
Another way you can use stress to be more productive is by setting deadlines for yourself. The “pomodoro technique" is an effective way of setting deadlines and targets because it gives you spaced out work and rewards at regular intervals.
The mild stress of a small deadline is enough to give you the motivation to start working. When confronted with a big deadline, many people freeze. If you give yourself many little deadlines, each one propels you forward to the next one, and you focus better for longer.
5. Reach out to others
When stress becomes too much it forces us to reach out for help, aid, and advice. Successful people reach out to others. They never allow themselves to get stuck under the pressure of having to be the person with all the answers. When we reach out and involve others in our challenges, not only do we make it through them more quickly and efficiently, but we also learn how other people problem-solve.
We are much less likely to experience burnout when we share our pressures.