Keep Calm and Press On

IMG_2065 (1)There are days aren’t there? Days when the overwhelmingness of life weighs heavy and the stress knot in the back of the neck grows from the size of a penny to the size of a grapefruit. Days when it is very difficult to see beyond the covers of the bed.  Days when it takes pure willpower to muster the energy and gumption to simply make it from morning to night.

Those days can be predicated by an illness, a death of a loved one, an unexpected change in plans, unemployment, a loved one who has lost their way or just a simple conversation with someone that set the world off kilter. Stress can overwhelm and overtake in an instant and today I would love to share with you a few things that I have found help during stressful times.

1. First of all as a Christian I pray. I pray for calm. I pray for positivity. I pray for the situation. And then I pray some more. There is no limit to prayer and that is what gives me the most comfort both in times of trial AND in times of great thankfulness.

2. Acknowledge that there will be some sleepless nights but don’t allow that to continue for too long. It is not healthy and the body needs to rest. My natural reaction to bad news is to toss and turn at night. Even if there is absolutely nothing that “I” can do about the situation my mind does not rest and especially at nighttime it wrestles with trying to come up with an answer. Once I realize that “I” can’t solve it my body responds and sleep comes. But in my life it is a reality that sleep will be difficult. I have often taken natural sleeping aids to assist even if it is only a cup of chamomile tea. It relaxes.

3.Be able to draw on history to move on. I am always able to look back on things that have happened in the past and say “hey–you know what?  That WAS a horrible time but I made it through it to the other side and I am a stronger person now”. At the time it may be difficult to see beyond but it is important to understand that this setback or issue is in the moment. There is another day coming.

4. Allow yourself time to grieve the loss, the change, the disappointment. Don’t try to hold it all in. Holding it in is not healthy for you or for anyone else around you. One day it will come out and probably not in a positive way.

5. Surround yourself with trusted friends and a support system who will let you be who and what you need to be as you work through your situation. Positive folks only need apply for this position because who needs Debbie Downer when you are down yourself? You know who those people are that support you in all things—go to them and even if you can’t share specifics, share that you need support. If they are who you think they are they will be there for you.

6.Breathe. Simply sit and concentrate on breathing slowly and deliberately. It is a natural calmer.

7.Eat chocolate. No joke here. Dark chocolate especially holds great value when it comes to being a stress reliever. Cocoa beans are rich in flavonoids, an antioxidant, which counteract the anxiety-producing hormone, cortisol. A little bit will do you.

8.Take a bath with relaxing scents around you. Nothing chills me out faster than a nice soak in a hot steamy bath with candles glowing all around me. Don’t knock it until you have tried it.

9. Don’t be static. Get up, do something physical if you can. Go for a walk. Clean a closet. If that is too much to tackle start small and clean a drawer. Just the distraction and sense of accomplishment can make a huge difference.

10. Know that tomorrow is a new day with new possibilities. Embrace that and repeat it out loud numerous times to allow yourself to fully accept that you can get through this situation and you WILL!  Keep calm and press on. You’ve got this!

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  1. As husband, D1, GS1 and I left the house three times for three separate showings — the beloved city house is up for sale — #1-5 resonate now. Family keeps assuring me it’s time to leave, time to move on. hmmmm…maybe that’s why I posted “Time to Say Good-bye” last week.

    • Maybe we are all thinking along the same lines? It is a time for change, for sure, and you will come out on top !!! The showings are difficult, I know—get your hopes up and then maybe nothing positive comes of it but it will happen. chin up!

  2. Great advice, Beth Ann. I’m listening. Thanks for having my back in prayer and support, dear friend.

  3. Beautiful and with perfect timing! I have been pondering similar thoughts – mine haven’t made it into a post yet. Sometimes, I think I need to ponder first, write second … so I don’t say the wrong thing! 🙂

    • Thanks so much!!! I agree—sometimes I have to let things percolate before I put them down. It is all part of the process. Can’t wait to read what you come up with!

  4. Ten helpful thoughts Beth Ann! Hope you have a great Monday!!!!

  5. Great advice especially the one about doing something. Even something very small and unrelated to what you are worrying about….I also really like that sign that was posted on FB a few weeks ago…

    “On particularly rough days when I’m sure I can’t possible endure,
    I like to remind myself that my track record for getting through
    bad days so far is 100% and
    that’s pretty good. ” (no idea who wrote it)

    I printed it out because, you know, that is my track record too.

    • I love that quote!! It is perfect. It is very true. That is what I am saying—-we do get through it. It may not be pretty or fun but we do come out the other side. Yay!

  6. All great suggestions Beth Ann. We also have to forgive others for having a bad day once in awhile too.Sending hugs.

  7. jennisincerely says:

    This is great advice, my dear! This is such a stressful time of year for people, and the weather is just making it worse. I know I need to take some time to just relax and BREATHE.

  8. These are great tips and many of which I use when life gets the better of me – one of my personal favorites – a long soak in a bubble bath! 🙂

  9. LOVE the chocolate part! I say amen to that!

    Hugs from Ecuador,

  10. When things get upset I try to remind myself of the wonderful life I have had that I never had expected. I choose to be happy and have happy good friends.

  11. See why I hate my name? Anything associated with being a “Downer” isn’t a good association for me! I try to look on the bright side of most situations. Sure, things happen (and I, too, can attest to that nighttime wrestling!), but I’ve found many of your “comfort suggestions” work for me — especially prayer!

  12. Can I pretend I’m having a bad day and eat chocolate? Great advice. Not just the chocolate part

  13. Great post Beth Ann; we all have days like what you described and for me, prayer helps the most, with Chocolate coming in second! I also find on days as you described, if I can just accomplish one small thing then that too helps me get through the day.

  14. Wonderful suggestions here! I especially like the prayer and chocolate advice.

  15. Prayer and bubble baths – -sometimes at the same time! Because it’s the only time I am not bothered as I wait until the kids are in bed. Mostly, I try not to ever just Sit and Stew: I feel it, let it all sink in…..and then either accept that it’s something I can change, or, do what’s necessary to prompt the change. The Bible tells us that we will have trials and suffering: time and chance happens to us all, so I just try to keep that phrase “this too shall pass” in mind.

    • I love your wisdom! You are so right that Sit and Stew just does not work. It just adds stress and unneeded emotions. I have been guilty of it but am happy that as I have gotten older I have been able to relax that part a bit. A bit. 🙂

  16. Thanks, Beth Ann. I needed to hear that today.

  17. Good advice, all of it! I might add – seek out someone you trust & talk to them. If you can’t talk about the situation right away, just talk. Eventually you will be able to talk about what you need & they will be there to help you.

    • That is a great addition. I think sometimes it is just easy to keep it all in and that is not healthy at all. Even if you can’t talk about it outright, like you say, it is good to at least have a friend you can share with .

  18. Good advice!


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