And most of them experience overload, overwhelm or basic stress to varying levels in their life.
I have also found that people have quite a varied capacity to handle stress in their lives. Some can handle more, for longer, and some for less.
But this what I have found to be common. Most people overestimate what they can achieve in the short term (less than 1 year), and under estimate what they can do in the long term (3+ years).
It seems that most of us have a pretty ineffective crystal ball.
Destressing Tip #1: One of the biggest stressors in our lives
Time causes innumerable levels of stress, for most of us, on a regular basis.
And the crazy thing is that time is not fixed and tangible. It is influenced by our minds and emotions. Sometimes time flies, and other times it drags. Regardless of the repetitive and standardized ticking of a clock, the passage of time is more linked to our thoughts and emotions than we give credit to.
It’s our ‘PERCEPTION’ of time (i.e. our thoughts and beliefs), that causes us to FEEL a certain way in relation to time.
So if we want to change how we feel about time, or how it makes us feel, we need to become more clear about what our beliefs about time are, and ditch them if they are not true.
Do you think “I always have enough time for what is most important” or do you think “I never have enough time”? The way they make you feel will have an impact on how you will perform, which will further impact your belief. The reality is that both of them could be proven true, but one of them empowers you and one of them disempowers you.
STEP 1: GET CLEAR OF YOUR BELIEFS AROUND TIME
It is your beliefs about time that are causing you more stress than time and life itself.
Destressing Tip #2: A get out of jail free strategy
I use this with lots of my clients.
But are you ok me telling a personal story first.
Several years ago I was looking at the trusty whiteboard in my office, and staring intently at the numbers I had written on the board earlier in the year. They were my goals and targets for the end of the year. And boy were they making me nervous. In fact, they made me so stressed out, that within 20 minutes I had broken out in a stress rash on my hand. Uncool, but also fascinating how directly stress affects us.
The other fascinating thing was the numbers were in my hand-writing. They were numbers that I dreamed up. No one forced me to write those numbers down. I realised that if I just rubbed a zero off the end of the number that I wrote in the first place, I felt a whole lot better.
I had fallen into the quagmire of ‘unrealistic optimism’. I had grossly overestimated what I could achieve in the short term. AND IT WAS STRESSING ME OUT!!!!
So what was the magical strategy that alleviated my stress?
I changed the TIME-line.
I gave myself more time. I extended the timeline.
I know we live in this society of quick-fixes, and immediate gratification, and chop-chop hurry up; but if you want to have fun over the long term, create significant things over the long term, and achieve over the long term, maybe you need to look very closely at your timeline.
Are you trying to achieve too much too soon?
Do you need to push back?
So this is a key part of the work I do with my clients. I help them work on their timelines, and although I believe in this magical universe making crazy things happen, at crazy speeds, I know that the wrong timeline stresses someone out and therefore makes them less creative, powerful and resourceful. Making it less likely for them to achieve their goals (and to come into alignment with the magic of the universe).
Destressing Tip #3: A reminder about Stretch Vs Snap
When it comes to goals, and timings and timelines, it is important to be self aware when it comes to our internal state.
Is the goal and timeline I have created causing me to feel stretched (and positively challenged), OR ready to snap (and maybe break out in some weird rash)?
It’s your life, so you need to be the one choosing or heavily influencing the choice.
Have you set yourself up to be challenged and grow as a result – which I am 100% for – or have you got a timeline that is going to make you throw a fit, break out in a rash, and scare all of your friends away?
It’s up to you to set your boundaries.
Do I need to summarise? (my fingers are tired)
I think you get it. If you have too much stress, or overload or overwhelm, have a good hard look at your timeline, and stretch it if it makes you less likely to jump from a tall building.
See your life from a higher perspective. Play the more sustainable (fun) game of life.
Have a super fabulous day and as always send me an email if you need a hand at any time.
PS: Will I be seeing you in Bali at my 3-Day Life Masterclass seminar?