To know how to calm your mind when you are feeling stressed is a valuable thing to learn and practice.
The lifestyle we’re living today generates high levels of stress which can lead to:
- Mental health challenges.
- Physical ailments or pain.
- Feelings of frustration, overwhelm and fatigue.
- Additional strain or pressure on relationships.
- Slower progress towards our goals.
If we learn how to deal with stress better, we won’t allow our external environments or events to affect us. We’ll be in better control of how we respond to the things we experience daily.
As James Allen, author of As a Man Thinketh, wrote, “Calmness of mind is one of the beautiful jewels of wisdom. It is the result of long and patient effort in self-control. Its presence is an indication of ripened experience and of a more than ordinary knowledge of the laws and operations of thought.”
During my university years, I was not aware of how to manage my emotional state during periods of high stress. Whenever an important assignment or paper was due, or during exam period, I was unpleasant to be around.
I used to get so tense and snap at people whenever something triggered me. Being in such an emotional state only added to my stress levels. Knowing what to do when feeling stressed was not something I knew during my years at university.
Having learned ways to deal with stress, I know they would have helped me a lot during my university years.
We don’t have to go through our days feeling stressed and being anxious if we don’t want to.
How to Calm Your Mind and Deal With Stress Better
Here are five things you can do whenever you’re experiencing high levels of stress or anxiety. These things are simple to do and will help change your emotional state quickly.
- Do something that makes you feel relaxed. This can include going for a walk, listening to music, walking in your garden, cooking or speaking to a friend. Some people prefer to be alone and quiet for a period of time. We have to do what works best for us.
- Observe the kind of thoughts you have. We’re the thinker of our thoughts which means we can separate ourselves from the contents of our thoughts. We can give them labels such as, “I’m thinking thoughts that’s leading to anger or frustration or overwhelm.” When we pay more attention to our thoughts, we’ll be able to change our self-talk to something more empowering.
- Determine what’s within or not within your control. Whenever we want to control something that’s not within our control, we generate negative emotions. We often create stress by imagining a negative consequence. By questioning what we’re imagining, we’ll find what we’re giving power to isn’t serving us. That will make it easier to let it go.
- Switch your focus to what you want to experience. We all want to feel good. By identifying what’s most important now, we can shift our focus to that. Knowing the outcomes we want to achieve and having a plan of action to get there is important.
- Practice mindfulness and releasing techniques. Having the ability to be fully present no matter what is going on takes practice and commitment. Practicing slower, deeper breathing is simple to do, but it’s also simple not to do. We have to use mental triggers to practice such techniques in the moment. Releasing techniques will help us let go of the emotions not serving us and focus on generating better emotions.
We can channel stress positively if we know how to do it. We all experience stress. As we learn how to deal with stress better, we’re more likely to have the kind of experiences we want. This means we’ll be in a healthy mental state more often, which will lead to us creating better outcomes.
Action Step: Reflect on the last time you experienced stress and how you dealt with it. Apply these ideas next time you experience high levels of stress or anxiety. Notice the difference it makes to your emotional state.
Question: What are other things to do when experiencing high levels of stress or anxiety?