Managing Stress

Mind Healing – Managing Stress

If you are experiencing high levels of stress you are not alone.

According to the Health and Safety Executive, an estimated 19 million people in the UK experience stress related health problems each year. This results in the loss of 2 million working days each year, at an annual cost to industry and commerce of at least £4.5 billion. In Medieval times, the word ‘stress’ was used to describe the type of physical torture needed to extract a confession. The thumbscrew produced compression stress, the rack tensile stress and so on. Today, thumbscrew and rack have been replaced by excessive workloads, information overload, financial worries, family rows, traffic congestion, aggressive confrontations, relentless deadlines and constant time pressures.

On this part of my website I provide practical strategies and guidance for managing all forms of stress in your life. By mastering them you can help to safeguard your performance, success, health and sanity! A good starting point will be to find just how stressed you are.

How Stressed Are You?

From the list below grade each from a-d, How Often do you suffer from:

(a) Frequently

(b) Occasionally

(c) Seldom

(d) Never

  1. Outbursts of anger.
  2. Loss of a sense of humour.
  3. Sleep Problems
  4. Loss of appetite or eating more than usual, especially sweet things.
  5. Feeling of sadness
  6. Difficulties in concentration or decision-making
  7. Decline in or loss of sex drive
  8. Loss of enjoyment in activities the previously gave pleasure
  9. Constant deadline pressures
  10. Feelings of being under appreciated at work or at home
  11. Sense of life running out of control
  12. Being unable to cope with expectations

How to Score

Score 3 for each (a); 2 for each (b); 1 for each (c) and 0 for each (d) response.

What Your Stress Score Reveals

30 +: Very high. You are experiencing excessive stress and should take prompt and effective steps to reduce this burden before it can cause lasting damage. Relaxation training, breath control and Mind Travel could all help here.

20 – 29:  Moderately high. Try and find ways of removing some of these problems from your life and mastering procedures that will help you take a more relaxed approach to life. Check out the procedures on this site to which might prove most beneficial.

10 – 19: Although your overall stress levels are not especially high, there are clearly occasions on which these rise to a potentially damaging extent. Try to identify such occasions and take practical steps not to become so wound up by the situation.  This site can offer some practical ways of dealing with especially stressful moment in your life.

Less than 10: Your stress levels seem to be within manageable proportions. Ensure that you stay in control of potentially stressful events by preparing yourself with some of the anxiety and stress management procedures taught on this site.

If you score suggested you currently experience a high level of stress in your life, do not add worrying to that stress. There are practical steps you can take not just to reduce negative stress but transform it into a positive force for good in your life. One of the answers is to focus on your breathing as stress levels rise.

Breathing & Stress

You will also find it helpful to understand the link between time and stress management.

The Stress & Time Connection

As the diagram above shows, having insufficient time to complete a job can produce rising levels of stress.

Increasing stress levels can lead to impaired performance and poor concentration with the result that easily avoidable mistakes are made. Tasks either have to be redone from the start or require further time to be spent on putting things right.

As a consequence, stress levels rise even further! To use time efficiently and keep stress at a comfortable level it is not necessary to work harder but it is essential to work smarter! 

In the words of international business consultant Peter Drucker: “Efficiency is doing the job right. Effectiveness is doing the right job.”

Some twenty years ago I wrote and presented a video offering practical strategies for reducing stress through effective time management. Since then my programme has been followed by hundreds of companies and thousands of individuals. The techniques and procedures I describe remain as powerfully effective today as when the film was first made.