We're back with the final part of the stress series. In PART ONE, we went over who exactly invented stress and when the word was coined, as well as what happens in our brain when we feel stressed. PART TWO was all about strategies to reduce stress. Today, we're going to see 22 different powerful questions that you can ask yourself on the spot to face stress, when it's happening, while it's happening. Keep reading or watch the video to know more...
We're busy. The world is changing, fast. We have to juggle with many things at once, and the accumulation of all these little tiny stressors is what we're fighting. It's not the one little thing. I've mentioned this joke in one of my previous blogs. The guy enters the bar and he orders three beers and he drinks them all. Then he orders two beers, drinks them both. Orders one beer, drinks it and then says: "I don't understand. The less I drink, the more drunk I get." But we get it, right? It's because of the accumulation.
Just like as I'm recording this, we are in Palm Desert and we drive here from Vancouver. On the first day, we drive for 12 hours. The second day, for 8 hours, and on the third day, we drive for 4 hours. And on the third day, after a 4-hour drive, we're more tired than on the day we drove for 12! Of course, you understand. It's because on the third day, we've been in the car for over 24 hours already.
The same thing goes for life. We are accumulating stuff in our drawer. There's us, at the bottom of the drawer with all our great answers, us at our very best. When you live through an experience and it does not get resolved, it accumulates in your drawer and when you open the drawer, you respond with all that junk. My job is to help people empty this drawer from the accumulated bad habits, negative emotions, anger, fear, hurt, sadness, guilt, trauma, and limiting beliefs.
Without any further ado, here are 22 powerful questions that you can ask yourself on the spot as you are experiencing some stress. Step number one, before any of these questions: Breathe. Just breathe, relax, and then go through your questions.
1. "What is this really about?" Potentially, there's something beyond it. It's the accumulation. This little thing is not it. What is this really about? What is accumulated in the drawer?
2. "What is triggering this?"
3. "What else is accumulated in my drawer?"
4. "What have I learned from the past?" More likely, we can compare this situation with something that has already happened. Figure out what you have learned from your previous similar experiences.
5. "How was it a good thing?" The thing that you've learned in the past, the similar situation that you experienced, there probably was a good side to it.
6. "How can I accept the past?" How can I accept it or what do I have to let go of? Usually, it's something we have to take in or something we have to let go.
7. "Am I making this up?" Let's say that you have just a headache. You start Googling it and then you think you have a brain tumor. Well, just drink a glass of water, go to bed early and more likely, your headache's going to be gone tomorrow.
8. "Is this another one of those things that I worry about that is never going to happen?" Sometimes, it is never even going to happen. We worry about something that is not going to happen!
9. "What other story can I make up that would support me instead?" We're making up something here. We may as well make up something that serves us instead.
10. "Has this already happened?" You're in the shower in the morning, and you keep thinking about this thing where you should have said this, you should have done that. You "should have" all over yourself, but it has happened already. It's done.
11. "Will worrying about it change what happened?" Probably not.
12. "Will my 'should haves' change the past?"
13. "How do I move forward and fix it now?"
14. "What is the next step?"
15. "What can I do to help all this right now?"
16. "Am I sleeping right?"
17. "Did I eat well today?"
18. "Am I taking care of myself?"
19. "Is it possible that this is just a minor health problem that will be gone tomorrow?" Because potentially, the things we worry about are small little things. And the healthier we are, the more we can face those stresses.
20. "Is there any logical answer to this random issue that I'm thinking about so that I can get it off my mind?"
21. "Can I make a list of everything I need in order to figure this out?" Or: "What are the steps that I need to take?"
22. "Can I deal with it later?" We've seen that in part number two. Postpone stressing about it.
These questions will help you when you are on the spot, just about to stress, and of course, you are always welcome to refer back to them. Review all these questions, write them down, use them, and remember: Start by breathing. Have a fantastic week, everyone, and start loving your life. Remember that also, that means loving your work, because work is part of your life. It's not either/or. Work is part of your life, so make sure that you enjoy every day and every second of it.
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Check out some of my previous blog posts...
The Chicken or the Egg?
2 Strategies to Take Better Care of Your Health