3 simple steps you can take to turn a stressful day into a manageable day
Burnout. Is. Real. and in this world, it is easy to reach. Think about life even just 20 years ago- burnout was still happening but we didn’t have all of the added noise of social media and information at our fingertips. Not only are you feeling the stress of a busy to-do list and the stress of being pulled in too many directions, your brain is taking in information non-stop from all of the technology in front of us- adding to the stress on an unconscious level. So how do we take a step back, turn it off, and let our brains recharge?
Step 1: Breathe
3 deep breaths. I’m talking 30 seconds out of your morning, afternoon, and or night. (5 second inhale, 5 second exhale). In 30 seconds, you have just lowered your heart rate and blood pressure- easing tension in your body. You have just increased oxygen to your brain for better thought and clarity. You have just allowed yourself time to be present in the moment, pausing the worry and the unproductive ruminations. Most importantly, you have just proved to yourself that your time is more valuable over anyone else’s time. That you can love yourself enough to take 30 seconds and care for yourself. Say it with me: B-R-E-A-T-H-E!!!
**As an added bonus, set a reminder on your phone between 2-3 times a day that says this: Breath for 30 seconds, drop your shoulders, unclench your jaw, and remove your tongue from the roof of your mouth.
Step 2: Stream of Consciousness Writing
This is a technique among writers but it can work for you too! Here's how: Take one page of a notebook and start writing everything in your head down on paper. Don’t think about spelling, punctuation, grammar, or the order of the words coming out. You can close your eyes if you want. The goal is to get the chaotic and stressful thoughts out of your head. Often times, as soon as I am done writing, I crumple up the paper and throw it away or burn it as a physical release. If you want to keep it and read it, that is your choice. Let me be VERY clear- this isn’t a to-do list or a task list. There is no structure and please don’t do this with the intent of creating structure or any organization. Simply write down anything your brain is thinking at that exact moment. It may not even be about work! Don’t think twice, just write. Stream of consciousness writing will allow your brain to empty out the nonsense and “stuff” cluttering your mind. It helps you vulnerably commit to your feelings and emotion without labeling it as anything. Sometimes you can even get powerful moments of insight that come to light. The goal is to be present in the moment and just observe your thoughts flooding out onto paper. It gets easier to let go and flow, the more you practice this technique. I've built this into my morning routine, to allow myself room for new thoughts of a new day and to ditch the thoughts of yesterday that no longer serve me.
Step 3: Move your body
We are energy- plain and simple. When we are in burnout mode, your feeling of energy dips. Ironically, in order to get your energy back up, we need blood flow and activation through using our energy. If you work in an office, get up and walk around the halls. This could be for 1 minute or for an entire lunch break. If you work from home, take a walk around the block, do a few jumping jacks or pace around the house for a minute. The goal isn’t to break a sweat (unless you want to, then by all means, you go girlfriend!), but instead, to distract and disrupt the pattern of your panic brain and kickstart those “feel good” endorphins. Heck... have a mid-day dance party to one song (or 10). When we are stressed it’s easy to power through your lunch and if you’re like me, we even forget to look up from the screen the entire day. Don't overthink the complexity of movement!
If you can do these 3 things every day, or when the daily stress is extra bad, I promise you this will not only help in the moment but it will slowly compound over time as you repeat these practices. Your stress is not in control, YOU are. You call the shots and I hate to say it, but you’re the only person that has the power to feed the stress AND relieve it.
If this helped, drop a comment below! If you feel called to share it with a friend, please do so. The more we can tackle the chronic chaos in our lives, the more we can each make our own impact through creative clarity.
Every day, I get the honor to empower women moving from the chronic condition that overwhelms their life, into embracing a clear and creative life. Life doesn't have to be full of stress and chaos, you deserve to have more of those "best day ever" feelings.
For more information on moving your life from a state of chronic chaos to creative clarity, you can visit my website katieannecoaching.com, book a free clarity call with me, and/or join my free Facebook group.
Until next time!