How Should We Deal With Stress?
Everything in our life can be a potential seed for worrying and stress. It affects all of us. How good are you with coping with the stress you come to face with?
“You cannot always control what goes on outside. But you can always control what goes on inside.”– Wayne Dyer
(American writer & speaker)
Stress can manifest itself as both emotional and physical influences on our well-being, and the list of the negative impact it has on us is long. Learning how to handle our stress can increase our happiness and health.
Dr. Don Joseph Goewey is the author of the bookThe End of Stress: Four Steps to Rewire Your Brain, and a pioneer in breakthrough approaches to overcome catastrophic life events. In his book, he explains how our auto-pilot perpetual stress reactions can be trained to sustain calmness. One of the tools he uses called the “Clear Button” method works great on acute stress and worries. If you are feeling the need for instant stress relief, this is a great exercise to try.
The 6 Steps to the Clear Button Method
1. Imagine a Button in Your Palm
Imagine a button at the center of your palm. When pushed, it sends a signal to the primitive brain to stop negative, stressful, or pessimistic thinking or judgments.
2. Press the Button.
Press the button on your palm. As you keep pressing, slowly bring your attention to the breath.
3. The Red Breath.
Take a breath. On the inhale count “1,” and on the exhale think red.
4. The Blue Breath.
Take another breath. On the inhale count “2,” and on the exhale think blue.
5. The Green Breath
Take a third breath. On the inhale count “3,” and on the exhale think green.
6. Let Go
Take one more breath and on the exhale, let your mind go completely. Relax into the present moment. Assert your intention to be at peace as you relate to whatever challenge you face, confident in the clarity your state of calm now affords you.
How did that feel? According to Dr. Goewey, we can steal away our attention from the primitive parts of the brain that focus on survival (a.k.a. the part that creates our worries), by pushing the imaginary button and counting. This also temporarily takes out your negative thoughts. Concentrating on the steps can be difficult when stress levels are high. If your attention wanders into other thoughts, there’s no need to panic. Just calmly re-focus and get back to the step you were at.
Stress can be positive in small doses. It helps us stay focused, accomplish goals, boost memory, and provide us the necessary survival reactions at times of crisis. However, prolonging stress can be detrimental to our mental and physical health. Having tips on how to cope with stressful times can help you manage a healthier mind and body. Next time a stressful situation occurs, I hope this method serves as a powerful tool you can use.
Image: UnsplashAbout Don Joseph Goewey. (2018, July 31). Don Joseph Goewey. https://donjosephgoewey.com/about-don-joseph-goewey/
Goewey, D. J. (2014a). The End of Stress: Four Steps to Rewire Your Brain. Atria Books/Beyond Words.
Goewey, D. J. (2014b). The Starter Kit for Resetting the Brain’s Auto Pilot from Stressed to Stress-Free. https://www.heilpraktikerschule.ch/fileadmin/hps_files/02_Dateien/04_Downloads/04_Diverse/Starter_Kit_Don_Joseph_Goewey.pdf
Marks, H. (2011, April 29). Stress Symptoms. WebMD. https://www.webmd.com/balance/stress-management/stress-symptoms-effects_of-stress-on-the-body#1