Posted on Jun 3rd, 2006

Stress Out

We’ve all said the infamous and useless phrase, “I’m stressed out!”

Here’s my question - “How many times do you have to say ‘I’m Stressed Out!’ before saying it starts to help?”

Similar to saying “I’m having a nervous breakdown”, this is a meaningless phrase that only serves to make us feel sorry for ourselves, and leads to no change at all.

Stress Down

Sounds really good, doesn’t it. Just reduce and/or eliminate all the stress from you life and everything will be OK. The problem is it’s just a myth that contributes to our feeling more and more stressed out.

We live in an increasingly complex and fast paced world, and unless we are bombed back to the Stone Age (a entirely different kind of stress), it’s just going to continue. So what we need are powerful tools for dealing with the stress in our lives, which leads to…….

Stress Through

In order to “stress through” you need to learn how to make the stress in your life work for you. To that end, here are 4 Stress Tools that you can use right away.

1. Tool of Resources

There are lots of resources out there to help you successfully manage your stress.

2. Tool of Relaxation

Here’s something I call “push-button relaxation.” Picture yourself somewhere that is very relaxing and peaceful. See, hear and feel everything as if you were there. Now create your own personal button to create this picture and feeling. For some people it’s a snap of the fingers, others use a word or phrase or lines from a song. Whatever quickly takes you there in your imagination. Use your push-button when you are feeling stress and notice the difference.

3. Tool of Battle

This does not mean to grab your sword and shield. It does mean to pick your battles wisely. Whether the situation is parent-child, between spouses, boss-employee, with a co-worker, neighbor or whomever, it’s vital to ask the question, “Is this a battle worth fighting?” Many of us tend to major in minor things. We let too many little things upset us. The more you ask this question, you’ll have less needless battles, less stress and more energy.

4. Tool of Fun & Spontaneity

We’ve just about killed off fun and spontaneity with our over scheduled and day planner run lives. I’ve even seen one friend’s daily schedule that had a 15 minute block that said “have fun.”

Here’s my challenge to you - sometime in the next week, do something totally spontaneous and fun. If you need a suggestion, here’s one from Lollie McLean, author of “Tools for a Happier Life” ( She recommends going for a “butterfly walk.” A butterfly walk is simply seeing a butterfly and following it wherever it goes. I know this sounds sort of “fluffy”, but try it. I did, and it’s very relaxing.

You will not be graded.

One more challenge, and then I’ll wrap this one up.

Take each one of these tools and regularly use them in your life for the next month. Not only will you notice a difference, I think you’ll like the difference.

Keep the change!

Visit for tips and tools for creating and growing a great relationship. You can also subscribe to our f*r*e*e 10 day e-program on how to enrich your relationship today, from relationship coach and expert Jeff Herring.

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