10 things you can do to stay calm

Before you start reading this article, a snippet of psychoeducation: ‘calmness’ is more often misconstrued as a ‘feeling’, but in fact, calmness is a ‘behaviour’. You can be angry and still act calmly. You can be anxious and still behave calmly. 

So, with this information, the tips below will offer some problem-solving strategies to handle your stress more effectively.

1. Create a plan

You may not always exactly know about what may walk your way, but you would have a pretty decent idea about the overall kinds of pressures that you could face on a daily basis. So, to maintain your peace of mind, you could decide in advance as to how you would generally handle some possible situations. A simple plan like: ‘If this this happens, then I will do that’ tends to keep things manageable and clear.

2. Learning how to breathe properly

This is one of the most helpful techniques that will help you keep calm. When we feel anxious, we tend to take shallow breaths which are rapid and quick. This is also known as hyperventilating which can make you feel giddy, light-headed and even fearful. Not only this, rapid and shallow breathing can interfere with your ability to make decisions effectively. A simple tip to deal with this is that you can take a deep breath through your nose, hold for a second or two and then release it, exhaling from your mouth. Repeat this a few times until you feel calmer.

3. Practice being grateful 

Cortisol is a hormone that is released when the body is under stress and it only becomes an issue when large quantities are produced in your nervous system due to long-term and continuous stress. 

Practicing gratitude, according to many researchers, can be effective in reducing cortisol levels. Additionally, being grateful can make you feel better and leave you in a better mood.

4. Count your way to calmness

When you feel like you are being bombarded from every side, just take a small time-out and count to 10 or 15. Taking these couple of seconds will give you time to breathe and calm yourself, at least in the short run.

5. Gaining a new perspective

Taking the previous point to the next level can help you to gain a new perspective regarding your situation. Taking a break can really give you that distance from the situation which you are in, thereby giving you time and space for a fresh and new perspective. When things are chaotic and happening rapidly, then it can be difficult for anyone to look at the given situation with a fresh perspective. A small break can help move things along.

6. Prioritise

All tasks on your to-do list are not equally important. Put some of the non-pressing things to do on the back burner while you take care of more important and urgent things. Setting priorities can help you gain a sense of control on your situation.

7. Stay flexible

Life, by its nature, is unpredictable. And no matter how much you try to control things, there is always a chance (however small) that a situation will pop up at the last minute which will be urgent, important or both. In such cases, take some time to re-assess the situation and regroup to methodically deal with the new task at hand. This is a far better approach than to feel upset or demotivated by the new task that has come up.

8. One thing at a time

Sometimes you may find that multi-tasking causes more chaos and confusion than being a great strategy to work with. So, when stress levels are high, it is better to focus on one thing at a time and get things done sequentially, rather than doing multiple things at a time.

9. Work as a team

When the pressure is building up, it is always a good idea to reach out to others for help. Delegation of work can also benefit. Seeking and receiving support from others is always comforting and beneficial in times of stress, therefore you can also offer to assist others when you think they may need it.

10. Try not to catastrophise

When things get tough, one has a tendency to think the worst possible things about their situation. E.g. “If I do not submit this report on time, I will get fired.” Or “If this task doesn’t get completed, my boss will reprimand me.” But instead of thinking about what is the worst that will happen, try to focus your energy on creatively working on the task at hand.

 
Juhi Jaiswal
Writer, Teacher, and Psychologist

Juhi Jaiswal identifies herself as a rat-race dropout and a chai drinker who finds comfort in rains, dogs and hugs. She considers herself as a full-time philosopher,  an experimental cook and a feminist. Juhi is qualified to be a psychologist but decided to be a writer and teacher. She believes that life’s utter meaninglessness is exactly what makes it so precious.

 

Juhi Jaiswal
Writer, Teacher, and Psychologist

Juhi Jaiswal identifies herself as a rat-race dropout and a chai drinker who finds comfort in rains, dogs and hugs. She considers herself as a full-time philosopher,  an experimental cook and a feminist. Juhi is qualified to be a psychologist but decided to be a writer and teacher. She believes that life’s utter meaninglessness is exactly what makes it so precious.

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Call at +91 86603 88394 and we can set up your free consultation.
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