Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Wishing You a StressLess Holiday

Rounding up this little series of postings with tips for our somewhat unsettling times, - and just in time for the holidays - some tips for the management of stress ….
Again, equally useful for any age, person, group or situation you might be 'managing'!!!!
Self-awareness – are you communicating, behaving, thinking, feeling the way you want your family or staff to communicate, behave, think & feel? Do a ‘self-check’ at least 3 times a day.
Coach self-awareness in others - your staff and family. Integrate non-confrontational language that draws people’s attention to themselves. Ie: when you ask someone how they are, stop and listen to the answer. Share a personal anecdote about your own self-awareness such as ‘I was so stressed this morning I didn’t even say hi properly. I do apologize. I should have noticed my shoulders were up under my ears! Do you ever have that happen?’
Practice self-management – stop every so often and stand up, take a deep breath and extend the exhale for as long as you can.  Check your neck, jaw & shoulders for tension. Shake it off1 Take another breath and sit down. This need only take 20 seconds! Another 20-second tool was suggested to me by my eye doctor: 20-20-20: every 20 minutes take your eyes away from your work and look out at least 20 feet away (at a tree outside for example), for 20 seconds. Then back to work  Either of these 20-second tools will renew your energy, your focus and your creativity.
Practice compassion, for others (no matter what the age), and yourself – self explanatory (I hope!) - For those of you familiar with Maslow’s Pyramid, having one up on the wall can be a helpful reminder.-
Get support for yourself – this can be in the form of coaching, counseling, peer group get-togethers, and self-care strategies such as regular massages, a meditation group, yoga class, or journaling about your day just before bed.

I do love feedback, so as you try these suggestions out, let me know how you fare!
Wishing you a wonderful holiday weekend, and a New Year filled with love, joy, and other pleasant emotions!

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