what is stress|
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How Do You Feel When You Think About Stress?
Do you have to get rid of stress to be happy? Although some life changes can be made to reduce some stress, it isn’t realistic to eliminate stress from our lives completely. Sometimes we have more stress than we think we can handle. However, I’m going to teach you how you can rethink the way you look at stress and still be happy.
Would you like to have no reaction to the word stress? Better yet, would you rather feel the same when you hear the word stress as you do when you hear the words, paper, pencil or lamp?
I’m going to teach you how with practice you can make that happen. You will be able to have no negative word impact with any word you hear after I teach you how.
What do you want right now? Less stress. More time. Better job. Better relationships. More money. Would that make you happier? Would that make your life less stressful?
It’s not all about money and power. Do you think the richest and most powerful people are free from stress. Could it really be possible that stress is removed from the lives of the richest and most powerful people and the secret to happiness is handed to them on a silver platter instead?
Some people think growing up with a ready made charmed life and a silver spoon in their tiny hand with all the right connections would have made them happier and their life so much better. It’s hard to really answer that because although it seems that would make life easier — money, power, success, a fancy job, fancy friends, a great big house, a fast sexy car, traveling around the world is all you really need, the real question remains is that really what makes people happy? And, would having material excess make your life stress free?
I’d like to take a minute now to point out none of the things I just mentioned in the previous paragraph are necessarily long lasting; they certainly don’t define you; and they don’t bring you peace of mind. Even with them you still have all the human experiences and emotions and worries someone without all the money and power has. Maybe even more because you now have the additional burden of holding on to the money and power and sorting out whether the people in your life like you or what you represent to them.
Tip #1) to Reduce Stress — Breathe 3x Half Smiling — follow the breath that is feel the sensation of the breath go in & out through your nose as you inhale & exhale.
I read in a book a long time ago, “The human condition is suffering. . . . all humans want to alleviate suffering.” That pretty much sums up the universal truth. Have you thought about what you can do with what you have right now to reduce stress. How about taking advantage of the most powerful tool and ally already available to you your mind. Through a practice of mindfulness you learn not to listen to thoughts, that thoughts are untrue in nature, and thoughts are fleeting. Which means, if you do nothing with the thought in 30-90 seconds it will dissolve into something much more interesting. This is very powerful. Very freeing.
Tip #2 to reduce stress: Watch the thought for 30 seconds without adding any other thoughts to it. Go back to following the breath.
Your mind is a powerful tool and ally and you can choose to be happy, open, kind to yourself and others living a healthy life style creating and attracting a successful life by fueling your mind with thoughts that create that life for you; or you can be miserable, lonely fearful, stuck in anxious mind states, angry, sleepless, creating a miserable life for yourself and those that come across your path. Creating the life you choose is really up to you more than you may realize.
Did you know that your mind has a mind of its own? Did you know that thoughts, automatic and untrue in nature pop up on their own. As you follow the breath you will notice very quickly that thoughts will pop up on their own. Automatic, untrue in nature. If you just watch them in 30-90 seconds they will dissolve into something much more interesting. So next time you have a thought that makes you feel fearful, anxious, worried, angry, uncertain. Don’t believe it. Just stop. Watch it. And in 30-90 seconds it will dissolve into something much more interesting. If you don’t believe me, try it. This works! Or, if you don’t want to wait 30-90 seconds — replace it with a positive thought of your own.
Tip #3) to reduce stress: Half smile while you are doing whatever it is that is causing you anxiety or stress. Smiling is so beneficial in many ways and helps you get through it. And, no, you don’t look silly.
Tip #4) rub a little lemon oil on your wrist, or spritz rose water on your face and breath in the delicious fragrance. Breathe half smiling 3x.
Tip #5) Make your mantra “As long as you’re breathing, that’s all that really matters.” and shift perspective. Remember life is impermanent, and this too shall pass whatever it is.
I am an expert in stress reduction|. Believe me I didn’t go looking for opportunities to become an expert. Life gave me all the opportunities I needed to train in this area|. Some of the life courses I took were: What is stress? What causes stress? Or should I say, Who causes stress|? Is stress real or imaginary? Does stress have to be caused? How can I stop beating myself up? How can I sleep|? When I sleep how can I stop having nightmares? Why am I so scared|? How can I not deal with this ______ (fill in the blank) Scared of what? How do I make this stop|? How do I deal with bullies|? How do I deal with losing my job|? How do I deal with a bad relationship?| How do I deal with losing my house|? I want my life back|! And finally, What! I have cancer| — I don’t want it! And on and on . . . Plenty of training. So I became a scientist of sorts and decided to investigate how you could reduce stress| and even cure stress| without using alcohol| or drugs (street drugs| or prescription drugs|. What I’m going to share with you is based on my own experiences and I invite you to first reflect on what I’m going to teach you and then conduct experiments of your own to see if what I discovered is also true for you.
1. Stress is only a word|.
Ty this Experiment making stress a neutral word in your thought vocabulary. For this experiment we are going to use special vocabulary which I will define: thought vocabulary, word impact, negative word impact, positive word impact, neutral word impact. This experiment will last as long as you want it to. It can be done any time you catch yourself thinking a word that makes you have a very strong positive or negative reaction. Or it can be done when you are following the breath. Read my article on How to Follow the Breath posted in my blog. You may also try this experiment whenever you want to see if you can minimize the severity of the reaction by just thinking the word and then stopping the thought. Try breathing and half smiling when you start to feel uneasy and notice how the uneasiness will quickly subside.
Thought Vocabulary Experiment:
Just like any other word stress doesn’t have any real impact on you unless you assign it an impact. Think of it as you have a thought vocabulary. There are certain words that evoke certain feelings and may even accompany physical responses when you hear them. They may create positive, negative or neutral images and feelings but they are there. For this experiement — We will think of it as word impact in your thought vocabulary. But this can be changed because your current thought vocabulary once you are aware of it can be tweaked and you can eliminate thoughts that have negative word impact — scary, anxiety producing, critical, judgmental, self-defeating, destructive in any way. The human mind is very resilient and pliable.
My working definition of a word impact| in your thought vocabulary| is: a word that you have already assigned a pre-judged thought| and conjured up feeling| arise in you when you hear the word. Word impact words can be positive: examples joy, love, peace, contentment, kindness. Word impact words with negative word impact examples are: annoying, fear, anxiety, stress, resentment, hate. The goal is to focus your attention on how you think about words and the way a word makes you feel and if it has a negative word impact change the way you feel about it and neutralize the word. You want the word to become a neutral word for you. Once you realize it is up to you whether the word has a positive, negative or neutral impact on you when you hear it. You will most likely want to experiment further with watching thoughts, how fleeting a thought really is 30-90 seconds, watching thoughts dissipate into something much more interesting, and thinking thoughts of your own to create the life you want. This is so powerful and so freeing. A path to peace. After the word has no negative connotation conjured up in your mind and emotion tagged along with it you have transformed the word into a neutral word. My working definition of a neutral word are words that you have assigned neither a negative or positive word impact and do not get a rise out of you. Some examples may be: crayon, chair, paper, lamp. What you want to do is have more neutral words and positive impact words and get rid of negative impact words from your thoughts vocabulary. That sounds like a lot of work doesn’t it. It is much worth the effort. Another easier way to do all this is through a practice of mindfulness.
Simply put, watch your thoughts. When a scary, negative, or anxiety producing thought pops up. Watch it and in 30-90 seconds it will dissolve into something much more interesting. Or replace it with one of your own. You become very adept at this in a practice of meditation.
No one can create stress for you only you can create stress for you.
I don’t know why it took me so long to figure this one out. But I’m pretty sure I’m not the only one. Sure they can try to push your buttons. If they are really good at emotional bullying and they have taken How to Mess With Your Opponent 201 (I hope there isn’t really such a thing) they may even convince you they are going to hurt you by figuring out what it is you value the most and then torture you by threatening to take it away from you. It’s how emotional bullying works. I’ve had bosses try this, partners try this, even my health tried to do this but I didn’t let it. But think about it. No one can really create stress for you. This only works if you let it work. Well let me rephrase that. No one can get in your head unless you invite them in.
You are the master of your thoughts. Did you see, Dana Carvey’s movie the Master of Disguise. If you didn’t, you must rent it. It’s a wonderful silly movie and one of my most favorite funny, laugh out loud movies. If you did see it, well do you remember the scene when Dana Carvey’s character Pistachio is learning all about his legacy and closely guarded family secret that they come from a long lineage of masters of disguise. Remember the look of great happiness on Pistachio’s face when he gets what this all means, and his face lights up like a Christmas tree and he repeats, “I’m the Master of Disguise. I’m the Master of Disguise. . . ” That’s how you should feel right now knowing that you are the master of your thoughts and you no longer have to fall victim to emotional bullying or any other stress reaction or negative mind state as a result of stress. Even if you lose a job. You get a new one. You may even discover you like it better. Even if you lose a relationship — Although it’s hard at the time, people come and go in our lives all the time and by letting go we move on and we’re ok (through a practice of mindfulness this also becomes easier) Even if you lose a home, you’ll find a new one and you will make it yours. Even in the worst case a disease, you will discover that it really isn’t the end of the world although it may sound like it is, but it isn’t. You are still you. There is still more right with you than wrong with you. I know this is true because I have experienced everyone of these thing as part of my stress reduction training life has afforded me.
You are not defined by your job, your home, your relationships, or even your health. No matter what happens you are still you. And as long as you are still breathing you have all that really matters. You already have all the tools available to you at all times to guard against every stress, emotional bullying, fear, anger, uncertainty, anxiety, regret. Stop beating yourself up. Treat yourself with kindness and love. I’m talking about your inner strength, wisdom, and emotional intelligence to sum it all up: It’s your awareness and thoughts. How do you learn to access these very key tools for survival, happiness, health, well being and peace — for a starter a practice of mindfulness combined with walking.
I can’t stress this enough — Remember your mind is a powerful tool and ally. Fuel it with thoughts that make you feel good.
Read my articles on How to Follow the Breath and Mindfulness is Home Sweet Home. I wish you great success, happiness and peace. Cindi Silva
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