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Developing A Stress Management Plan

Stress takes it’s toll on us not just mentally but also physically.

Physical symptoms of stress include:
  • Aches and pains
  • Chest pain or a feeling like your heart is racing
  • Exhaustion or trouble sleeping
  • Headaches, dizziness or shaking
  • High blood pressure
  • Muscle tension or jaw clenching
  • Stomach or digestive problems
  • Trouble with physical intimacy

A stress management plan does not necessarily require a lot of time and energy. Many times it is just making a commitment to reduce the level of stress in your life, by taking a few small, but meaningful, steps toward improving your overall health and well-being.

A good place to begin your stress management plan is by identifying 5 activities that you really enjoy participating in. These can be anything from reading a good book, to taking a long walk on the beach.

If you have hobbies that you enjoy spending time on, be sure to include these in your list. Other options could be things you have always wanted to do, but never got around to, or things that you used to enjoy, but haven’t had the time for lately.

The one stipulation is that these are activities which are not related to work, or another source of stress
in your life.

Make a list of at least 2 things that you almost always do, that you either probably shouldn’t be doing, or can live without doing. This list can include things like:

  • Bringing work home from the office
  • Doing your teenagers laundry
  • Cooking huge meals during the week, after working all day etc…

These are things that will not cause the world to fall apart, if you stop doing them.

Make a list of at least 2 things that you probably should have done by now, but didn’t. Things you have been putting off, or problems you have not been dealing with directly.

If you’ve been meaning to call your insurance agent for the past few weeks, but haven’t, if you’ve been
thinking about dusting the cob-webs on the front entry way for a month, but haven’t, write those things down.

At this point your 3 lists will now become a goal sheet. Your stress management plan will look like this

This week I will

-Spend at least 15 minutes every day doing one of the things I enjoy. (List the 5 things you wrote earlier under this section.)

-Eliminate 2 needless tasks from my list of things to do. (List the 2 things that you wrote earlier under
this section.)

-Tackle 2 things that I have been putting off for a while. (List the 2 things that your wrote earlier under this section.)

Take Control

Take back control of your own life. Don’t let stress be at the steering wheel.

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