We all live with stress. In fact, a bit of stress is good for us. When we really care about something the adrenaline kicks in and we feel our stress levels rise. All good. It’s okay to be stressed.
But when we are managing higher levels of stress, sometimes we can feel overwhelmed.
There are a number of ways to reduce stress and to increase our levels of self-care. One way of helping reduce stress and getting out of our head is to be kind.
It’s hard to feel sorry for yourself when you are being kind; when you care about someone else.
One of the exercises I do with teams is to come up with as many ways as possible that we could show kindness without spending any money.
Some of the ideas were:
For a long time, I managed my anxiety with a mix of too much alcohol (particularly red wine) and poor food choices.
I drank so much red wine my skin went red and I would use green make-up to try and reduce the redness of my skin. I was really embarrassed about the colour of my skin colour; but not so much that I would stop drinking.
I often ate bad food to counter the yucky feeling of being hungover. So it would be of no surprise that by age 50 I weighed more than 100 kg (162 cm in height) and I could barely move because I rarely exercised. I also criticised anyone who didn’t drink alcohol and people wearing lycra! I was on fire.
Good news: I nearly died - and eventually I got the memo!
So the benefit of having an addictive personality is that I retrained it. I have now become obsessed with exercise and healthy food. Winning!
Then came the summer of 2020. Huge bushfires that raged for weeks and then COVID-19. My anxiety kicked in...