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The Stress Test

What’s your stress level?

Are you as cool as a cucumber even in the midst of chaos, or do you snap or combust when the slightest thing doesn’t go your way? Find out how effectively you manage stress, and pick up some handy tips to help you cope!

1. The kids are taking turns to be difficult, it’s past 2pm but you haven’t made lunch, the house looks like a hurricane swept through it and you realise you’ve run out of clean underwear. You:

  • Collapse into a sobbing ball of frustration, anger and helplessness.
  • Are completely unaffected by the situation.
  • Take a minute to breathe, sip some water and pull yourself together before listing the top priorities. A little hunger and dirt never killed anyone, you know.

2. Your work has piled up, and now you have several deadlines looming at once. Your boss has also asked if you would be able to deliver them ahead of time. What do you do?

  1. Type out your resignation letter, whimpering all the way, because there is absolutely no chance you are going to get on top of all that work.
  2. You’re already late, what’s the point of getting stressed out?
  3. Quickly assess the situation to see how to make the best of it, while steeling your nerves to honestly tell your boss “no”.

3. You find yourself in a jostling crowd, on the streets, in the mall, or in the bus. What are your physical reactions?

  1. You break out in a cold sweat, feel dizzy, and can’t breathe. You’re spiralling towards a nervous breakdown.
  2. You get out of the situation, ASAP – even if it means waiting longer for the next bus or postponing the tasks that you set out to do.
  3. Close your eyes and focus on whatever it is you are trying to achieve. To distract yourself from the discomfort, you plug in to some music or read a book.

4. You’re having an argument with your friend/spouse/family member, and it’s reached the point where you are both too heated up to deal with the problem constructively. You:

  1. Lose your temper and lash out, despite knowing it might result in less than ideal consequences.
  2. Walk out of the situation without a resolution.
  3. Stop yourself from carrying on and ask for a timeout to collect your thoughts and calm down.

5. What activities do you indulge in to unwind and relax?

  1. Nothing. You can’t bring yourself to relax, because you’ll be caught off-guard when faced with the next stressful situation.
  2. Sleep.
  3. Healthy activities, such as exercise, or something you enjoy, like cooking, reading or meeting up with friends.

 

If you answered mostly

a: Whoa! You’re probably more tightly wound than a ball of yarn. You experience high levels of stress, and you need a better way to handle it.

b: You’re Mr/Ms Zen personified, but that may come from using avoidance as a coping mechanism.

c: You’re stressed, but are none the worse for it, as you attempt to deal with stress as effectively as you can.

 


5 Survival Tips for Stressful Situations

Stress less, less stress! Bear these handy tips in mind to manage your stress levels effectively:

  1. Get organised. Try your best to plan ahead, or anticipate situations by making a to-do list. Prep meals in advance, plan your work schedule in a manageable manner, and choose to run errands during off-peak hours if possible.
  2. Find healthy ways to cope. Try natural remedies such as therapeutic essential oils or balms – soothing scents may help you relax. Keeping hydrated with plenty of water, and eating proper meals and healthy snacks also help to alleviate stress. Exercise, such as brisk walking, yoga or swimming regularly will strengthen your body and mind, paving the way for you to handle stress better.
  3. Recognise what triggers your stress. They may be lack of sleep, the failure to plan ahead, too much caffeine or an unhealthy diet. Take charge of your life and cut out the things that do not boost your mental, physical and emotional well-being.
  4. That’s right, just breathe. Take deep breaths and count to 10 to calm yourself down.
  5. Learn to let go. Accept the fact that you’re only human and prone to mistakes. Don’t beat yourself up over failures, and make sure you have a good support system of friends and family to listen to you and give advice.
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Sylvy Soh
Posted by ezyhealth on Apr 15 2015. Filed under Pop Quiz. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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