Not a rampaging bulldog bear in sight – what next?

What needs to happen when you’re no longer in any real danger of being consumed by what you saw as the raging bulldog of adversity?  

In the last blog we talked about the effects on your body and mind in not finding ways to turn your innate stress-response mechanism to the off- position once it’s no longer needed.  Now, we’re going to look at some of the ways to do just that.

One of the very first steps to take is to become aware that the stress you’re feeling may be a result of not allowing your body and mind to come back to a level of equilibrium after the life-event that knocked you out of whack is no longer any real threat.   

The next step is to realize that the level of stress you’re continuing to experience is tipping your optimum performance and optimum life scale way out of whack. 

Although unpleasant both physical and emotional symptoms of too much stress alerts us to the fact that we’ve allowed our perceptions of whatever the life circumstance to destabilize our sense of well-being.  So becoming aware of both your physical and emotional symptoms tops your priority list. 

Adopting the right attitude can convert a negative stress into a positive one”   Hans Selye

Exploring the causes of any prolonged stress-response is key.  The insights that come from acknowledging and working to alleviate stress levels so that your body and mind return to a state where living is no longer a grind, are crucial.  These are the insightful nuggets of learning that you incorporate into how you view and interact with life going forward.  The next time similar high intensity stressors appear in your life you’ve equipped yourself to deal with them more effectively.  This is one of the indications that you’re beginning to live life in a more resilient way.    

However, at the same time you’re gaining insight, it’s also important to explore activities, which best suit you in releasing the open valve of stress-response, which is flooding your system with unhelpful by-products.   

Making a situation less problematic

The folks at the Mayo Clinic suggest that when you’ve identified a situation as too stressful, you can begin to formulate strategies that make it less problematic. If you can’t come up with some ways of alleviating the stress yourself, ask others what has worked for them.  Believe me you’re not the only one who has ever felt overwhelmed.    

“In order to succeed, people need a sense of self-efficacy, to struggle together with resilience to meet the inevitable obstacles and inequities of life”.   Albert Bandura

Stress won’t disappear from your life.  However, with practice you’ll find ways to reduce unhelpful levels of stress while increasing your ability to cope with and learning from the challenges of life. 

Some of the ways I’ve found to work are:

  • Viewing the situation from a broader lens. 
    • On a good day I tell myself that ‘this too shall pass’ when something less than satisfying comes into my life. 
    • A question I ask myself is this: In a year from now will this current situation matter to my life?   Sometimes the answer is yes but more often than not the answer will be no. 
  • Having the ability to find the funny side of the situation and being able to laugh about it!
    • Science has found that laughter not only lightens you mood but it induces physical changes that can offset the effects of staying in a state of stress-response. 
    • By enhancing your intake of oxygen-rich air, laughter charges up and then cools down your stress- response stimulating your heart rate and blood pressure…. in short it relaxes you. 
    • Laughter also stimulates circulation and muscle relaxation, relieving any physical stress-induced symptoms while improving your immune system.
  • Just getting out of my own way of thinking and feeling.
    • Sometime when I catch myself sinking into the continued stress-response vortex I say to myself: Just STOP.  Stop what you are thinking.  Stop having the feelings and emotions you’re allowing yourself to have. 
    • How I actually do this ‘stopping’ is I take myself away from the situation or modes of thinking by changing my present environment.  I go for a walk, go to the movies, meet up with friends or listen to music; whatever it takes to STOP whatever I’m doing or thinking that isn’t serving me. 
  • I write a list of all the great things in my life.
    • Even when I don’t really want to or can’t readily think of, one, let alone a whole list of things to be grateful for.
    • However, just beginning the list helps the flow to come.

You are unique.  The ways you find to not only alleviate but arrest unhelpful levels of stress from becoming the norm in your life will be your own. 

Living a resilient life incorporates the ability to sense the signs of stress overload, changing your relationship to the situation and learning from the experience, enabling you to deal more effectively with similar situations in the future.

Igniting Your Passion Through Clarity of Purpose & Focused Action

Connect with Ruth

Testimonials

“I recently heard Ruth speak to an audience of over 400 at a motivational event.

She is a compelling story teller, she held the audience in a state of suspension between laughing at the humorous parts and wondering what would come next in the dramatic bits.

Her speech was an inspiration and an experience. Her style is comfortable, conversational and positively provocative.

She entertains and enlightens her listeners while making them think and encouraging them to take action.”

Peter Wright, Director, Public Speakers Association

Peter Wright

Ruth is an inspiring speaker and great storyteller, who weaves a seamless message within her presentation. Her humour and down-to-earth messages kept the audience hanging onto her every word. Ruth’s message was funny, entertaining, real and inspirational. I wholeheartedly recommend her for both organizational and public keynote speaking forums

Paula Morand

Ruth's performance at momondays was well crafted, entertaining and engaging. Her message about choices really hit home with the audience. We'd have her back on the momondays stage anytime!

Michel Neray - Founder and Producer of momondays

Ruth is a wonderful coach, mentor and facilitator. She has an uncanny ability to unlock insights into issues by guiding the people she works with to see and understand their worlds differently. She has a deeply human touch that is grounded in the realism of commercial experience and a sensitivity to the complexities of social and organisational affairs.

Dr. Paul Johnston DBA, MBA, pgce, BA (hons) Dr. Paul Johnston DBA, MBA, pgce, BA (hons)

Ruth is a really great person. I thoroughly recommend her in a coaching, mentoring or facilitating role. She is one of the few coaches that has a profound experience of integral thinking which she uses to great advantage in her work.

Mike Pupius - Co-founder at Centre for Mindful Life Enhancement

Ruth is insightful, warm, caring and a great listener. These traits, coupled with her deep academic background and astute practical mind, make her an excellent coach, mentor and facilitator. Ruth helps you see complex situations from different perspectives, leading to solution or action plans. She is a delight!

Enn Martin - Enterprise Support Manager at Oracle

I thoroughly enjoyed Ruth’s bubbly and enthusiastic presentation straddled by a touch of personal humour and a sense of commitment to society. Her delivery was very eloquent and confident. The message was clear and precise and riveted the diverse audience for 10 minutes leaving us wanting more.

Martin Buckland

Ruth is a confident, inspiring and effervescent speaker. She strategically uses humour to create a relaxed environment while captivating the audience with her story of personal resilience. In a brief few minutes, Ruth left us wanting more and sent us forth with a refreshed gratitude and respect for the power of human kindness and perseverance. The plot twists of life really do occur for a reason and uncovering that reason is Ruth's passion.

Brenda Collard-Mills, C.R.S. Professional Resume Writer | Resume Content Specialist

As the owner of a marketing agency for speakers - and the host of momondays Barrie, I see a LOT of speakers... I can say without reservation that Ruth has a genuine talent for speaking. When she shared her story on the momondays stage in 2014, she had the audience laughing, thinking and on their feet. Ruth, you speak with a genuineness and humour that touches an audience. It was a pleasure!

Lauren Pibworth - Owner, Pibworth - marketing agency for speakers

Buy Ruth’s Books