While few things are more certain in life than change, that does not necessarily make dealing with change any easier. When change comes your way, you might need some stress management techniques to help get you through it. And maybe next time you’re coping with a life change it will be a bit easier to handle.
1. Let yourself feel the sense of loss, grief, hurt, anger, pain, or other emotions that the life change brings on. It may be a costly mistake in terms of your emotional and even physical health if you stifle your feelings, or tell yourself you “shouldn’t” be feeling the things you do. Go ahead and let yourself experience the emotions, and don’t judge yourself.
2. Don’t wallow in those negative emotions, either. While honestly experiencing those feelings is healthy, dwelling on them for a long time (years, perhaps) and allowing them to make you bitter and angry is not optimal. If you need to, seek professional help in letting those feelings go after experiencing them.
You might consider keeping a journal or doing artwork to get through the emotional difficulties. These creative activities can be helpful, because you have to “feel” the emotion to write, draw, paint, or sculpt; but then the feelings are worked out and transformed into something tangible.
3. Try to see the life change in a positive light. Go ahead and embrace the change rather than trying to hide or run from it. Accept it, and you may find a sense of freedom.
4. It’s okay to say “no” to some activities so that you can get some extra rest. Excessive sleeping can be a sign of serious depression, but getting some extra rest during a time of upheaval and change may actually be healthy and help you cope better.
5. Remember who you are. Your identity, interests, life goals, and so forth are important to remember during times of change. They are like your anchors. A life change may actually bring on a reassessment of these things, and that can be healthy, too. Maybe you need to face some fears and anxieties you have about change in general. Now is the time to do it.
Things to Avoid
It’s also worth noting some not-so-healthy ways of coping with life changes and the stress that may bring. Some destructive coping strategies to avoid include:
* Drinking alcohol
* Spending money on things you don’t really need
* Starving yourself
Citizen Counselling and Coaching have a number of our counsellors and coaches who can provide support around stress and anxiety management This can include identifying the obstacles, creating practical plans and through sharing techniques and models that have worked for others.
Our â€˜My Stress Coachâ€™ online programme and Coaching was designed for time poor busy people looking to manage their stress and achieve a positive change in their lives.
Our Stress Management page can explain more
You will find our online programme ‘My Stress Coach’here