Wednesday 21st November 2018,
Inspired Girl

How Do You Respond to S-T-R-E-S-S?

inspirista Balance, Blog Posts

Yesterday my Little Man dropped our laptop. He tripped over Lulu’s flip flop, and was totally fine, but unfortunately the laptop didn’t fair so well. As you can imagine, there’s a lot of important stuff on the laptop – all of our family photos, all of my work, and just a lot in general.

In the moment that I realized the laptop went kaput, I was chatting with a dear friend about a situation she was dealing with, and as I heard my own voice begin to escalate in response to her issue, I knew I had to release the stress myself or else I would project it through the rest of our conversation. “I’m sorry, Vanessa. My laptop just went, it’s completely fried. Guess its God’s way of clearing out the hard drive to begin again, fresh…”

As soon as I said the words, I felt better about the situation. And I know if I go to a computer shop there’s a chance they may be able to retrieve all of our stuff. Breathing it out and releasing it {both verbally and internally} helped ALOT. There have been times in my life, though, when I would have stifled it, saying on the outside “It’s no big deal.” But on the inside the stress never really left and would trigger me to act out less than healthy behaviors to cope – eat, shop, hold it all in, or project it on to other situations, people, things.

Now, I know this was just a laptop, and the situation could have totally been prevented {lesson learned for me}. But, there’s no question, stressful things come in many forms, and happen to us all. If we don’t choose how we want to release the stress – our triggers will train us or drain us. We need to choose how we want to respond, and retrain our triggers.

Choosing an alternate stress response was one of the first things I did, once I understood how I was handling stress and realized it wasn’t serving me {or others} well. Instead of responding to stress by eating, I chose to respond by organizing. I even hung a sign up on my refrigerator that said “Stress=Organize”. Sounds silly, I know, but the visual helped me to redirect my stress and remember my choice to organize in those moments that the robotic “stress -eating” response kicked in. To this day if my husband comes home and everything is neatly organized, laundry folded and put away, closets cleaned, he asks, “What happened today?” Guess he knows organizing is a stress response for me!

Here are a couple of questions for you to consider:

1) How do you handle stress? When a “stressful” situation happens, what is your response? Do you hold it in until your going to burst? Or, do you unconsciously “stress eat” or “stress shop”? Do you project your stress onto others by yelling, snapping, or by being overly critical?

Be honest with yourself, this is not about judgment {remember self-discovery should be a Judgment-Free Zone}, it’s about awareness. We can’t change what we are unaware of, so just knowing how you respond to stress beings a level of awareness that is necessary for movement forward in a healthy way.

2) How would you prefer to handle stress? What is a healthy behavior that you can choose to do in response to stress? How will you remind yourself of your healthy stress-response choice until it becomes learned?

Now, I’m sure you’ve heard the phrase “don’t sweat the small stuff” – sounds simple, but I realize how hard it can be. I get it, I’ve stressed out about things both big and small – over the years, strengthening my faith became integral. The amount of time you spend feeling and experiencing stress is directly correlated to overall health, as almost every organ in the body is effected negatively by stress. So, in my next post, I will discuss strengthening your anchors with “preventative” and “reactionary” stress relief techniques to minimize how much time and energy you spend on stress!

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About The Author

writer. speaker. dreamer. foodie. late night blogger. wife. mother. believer. Founder of Inspirista Lifestyle Design + Co-Founder of The Domesticated Dad + Author of Balance Book & Little Miss Negative...

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