We live in a fast-paced, technology-driven environment. From time-to-time we will all experience some form of stress in our lives. There are many different forms of stress and some stresses and stressors are actually good for us, it gives us the drive to move forward, the motivation to create change and in basic terms survive – think fight or flight theory. However, when we experience too much stress, it can become harmful and have a negative impact on both our physical and emotional well-being.
Let’s start by quickly exploring what stress is. In simple terms, stress is the body’s reaction to any change that requires an adjustment or response. It’s our bodies response to pressures from a situation or life event. Our social and economical and environmental surroundings can impact our stress levels.
Many of us place the needs of others above our own, be that employers, colleagues, friends or family. How many times do you play the Samaritan but feel you don’t get the level of support back that you give out? All too often we concentrate on pleasing the needs of those around us rather than taking the time to care for and love ourselves. By the way self-care is in!
In Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) they ask you to examine your thought processes, for example, ‘What would I do differently if I loved myself?’. We challenge you to ask yourself the same question – try writing down the answers and then applying them to you day-to-day routine. Research shows that by practicing regular self-care, your stress levels will decrease and you’ll start to feel great about yourself. If you’d like to go one step further, you could try the following affirmation ‘I am a good person who is deserving of good things. I am safe and all is well. Stand in front of a mirror, look yourself in the eye and say the affirmation out loud in a confident voice. Repeat 3 times on a daily basis and you’ll soon start to reap the benefits.
Give yourself a break – you’re a great person!