Here are some of the top stress management strategies I’ve encountered.
They may seem easy and obvious at a glance, and they are, until you are really stressed and you need
them most. Practice these five strategies constantly and when the inevitable stress arrives you will be
much better prepared to deal with it.
1) Avoid judgements. They trigger adrenaline, which increases anxiety and reduces our ability to
process thoughts rationally, leading to a downward spiral.
2) Focus on how you are perceiving things. Perceptions are a choice. That choice triggers and
justifies your response. Step back and ask yourself if your current response is increasing or
reducing your stress. Then choose to perceive things in a way that benefits you. You can choose
to see it as an irritant, choose to see it as an inspiring challenge, or choose not to engage at this
time. Your brain will respond to whatever you choose, and your stress level will follow.
3) Monitor and discipline your inner voice. It is providing a commentary based on the context of a
lifetime of experience. This is referred to as conditioned responses. Just like the Pavlov’s dog’s
experiments. If you are not managing your inner voice you are not managing your current
outcomes.
4) Deliberately disconnect. Sleep, exercise, and maintain a regular diet that is as healthy as
possible. Schedule a reasonable amount of time to do something you enjoy. Most importantly,
understand the importance of enjoying your disconnect time. When you learn to do this well
you will return to real time refreshed and, often, with unexpected insight into dealing with your
stressor.
5) Appreciate what you have. In many parts of the world luxuries like food, water and security are
not available to most people. Simply recognizing that so many are so less fortunate than you
reframes the obvious truth that so many are more fortunate also. The “importance of winning”
social conditioning can be debilitating when it is not managed into being a motivator.

Again, these practices sound simple, but get increasingly difficult as stress levels rise. So practice self
management regularly. Choose to offer others, and yourself, better managed choices and you will find
you get better performance from yourself and better responses from others.