Turn your Panic into Peace!

Weekend Getaway in PA

You may not feel as though you can tackle the world with ease at the moment. But, chances are if you decided to keep reading after seeing this title, you have the desire to actually experience joy, in life. I’m here to tell you, it is possible!

We all get overwhelmed from time to time. Unfortunately, it is part of life. Adulting is damn hard! We are part of a society of overworked, stressed, overwhelmed, and sleep-deprived people. Our moods can soar to great heights and, sometimes when we least expect it, crash in a second. Busy, hectic, and unpredictable schedules lead to terrible eating habits and before you know it we have a whole new list of issues.

As a Health and Life Coach, I hear all of the above from my clients. I get it. Believe me when I say, “I’ve been there!” One of my favorite things to do is to educate and help others help themselves. I’m going to share three ways you can better handle your stress, and you can use these methods today! But before we get to the tricks up my sleeve, I want to share how I got to this point of learning to cope.

Listen, I’ve always been completely transparent with my readers. I’m all about keeping it real. So this topic will be no different because I’m no different than any of you. After soul-searching, further education, and doing the work on myself, I learned, and was able to apply simple strategies that I now know, make all the difference!

I am a full-time teacher, help my husband run our business, raise a teenage daughter with Down Syndrome, still try to parent a twenty-year-old young man, and run my coaching and writing business in my ‘free time’. I’ve had many days of panic, crying, and bitching about everything that goes wrong in my life. I have overeaten to the point of hating to look in the mirror. I have picked arguments with my husband and those close to me because of so much pent-up frustration. I used to talk so badly to myself about being a failure at just about everything that I’ve struggled with depression. Then, I had enough.

So I began the journey of deeper self-discovery. Here are three of the many ways I’ve learned to ‘Turn my panic into peace’ and take control of my own life!

  1. Start a Gratitude Journal
  2. Know your WHY
  3. Breathe

Gratitude Journal

First of all, an attitude of gratitude is essential. I can easily fall down the rabbit hole of endless complaints I have about how my life is going. I think about the dozens of emails I have yet to answer, the ever-growing pile of dirty laundry I have to do, or the fact that I haven’t reached all my career goals yet. That kind of negative thinking causes me to hate my life and develop a ‘why bother’ attitude.

It’s too overwhelming to only think about all you have to accomplish, what you haven’t done yet and the things you don’t have. It’s exhausting. But… When you focus on what is going well in your life, first thing in the morning, you are able to begin your day on a positive note. That in and of itself is a very powerful tool. Handling the day-to-day stress becomes much easier when you recognize, first, all you have to be thankful for in your life.

When I committed to making my gratitude journal a regular morning routine, everything changed. I begin my day remembering all I have accomplished, and how far I have come. I count my many blessings, like my beautiful, healthy children, my two published books, a loving husband, and a job I love. I even write a prayer of thanksgiving and a request to guide me through my next difficult task. It gives me feelings of great joy, and the confidence and calm I need to get through my day.

Know your WHY

The second tool I recommend is to find focus. I can stand steady and feel calmer when I remind myself WHY I work so hard. Why do I want or need to do the job at hand? Is it in alignment with my big goals? Will it help me accomplish my heart’s desire?

I have always been a goal-setter. It motivates me to think of the end game. It drives me to do whatever it takes to achieve what I truly want. But first, I had to stop and really think about my priorities and what my heart wants out of life. This is another topic I write about in my journal. I have wanted to be a published author for as long as I can remember. I have always been a writer in one way or another but never had the confidence to put my work out into the world. When that little voice inside got loud enough, I listened. I read about it, researched, ask other authors what to do, and got to work. It was something I desperately wanted so I did what I had to do and made it happen.

What is deep inside of you wanting to come out? Your desires are based on your top priorities in life. What do YOU want? Not what you think you’re supposed to do. What does your heart desire? Ask yourself what are the things most important to you and write them down. That becomes the roadmap for your life. Write down your goals, hang them where you can see them, and create a vision board. Focus drives you and makes the difficult stressful days worth it. You feel less stressed because the end game is everything to you. Your top priorities become your motivation and make the work it takes to ‘get ‘er done’ feel more manageable. Know YOUR why!

Breathe

Life gets tough. Adulting is damn hard! Unfortunately, stress and overwhelm are inevitable. However, you can learn to lessen the effects and practice simple ways to cope.

I love practicing quick and easy breathing techniques that I can do whenever the stress begins to build. I close my eyes (unless I’m driving of course) breathe in through my nose for a count of five, hold my breath for five seconds and then exhale, through my mouth, for seven seconds. Sometimes once is enough, but you can repeat this breathing pattern as many times as you need to feel calmer.

Keep in Touch

Have you experienced times of uncontrollable stress? Do you know your heart’s desire? Have these tips helped you begin to feel calmer? Leave a comment or question. I’d love to hear what you think. Self-analysis is necessary at times. Just don’t beat yourself up. When we know better, we do better. Stay well!

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