It's the lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer and you're supposed to be relaxing and having fun. Yet you still have work to do and the expectation that you should be taking it easy is giving you more stress.
Periodically, especially during summer, when others are in full on play and party mode, dear ones seem to think that by guilting or pressuring me to relax and to take time off from business is going to solve whatever work challenges I have. It's summer they say, you should be hanging out and slowing down, don't work! We have been conditioned to think of summer as a time for fun, rest, play and no work or study. What if you are faced with tons of work and or study?
Other people's expectations that you should be carefree and ready to dive into playtime is causing you even more stress than your responsibilities. If you are like me, the work you are doing is rewarding and enjoyable. It is not a case of drudgery vs. boundless joy. There is a balance between work, time with loved ones, and relaxation.
Summertime, your friends and family are going to be demanding more of your time, but oftentimes the workload continues without pause. How do you balance your time so that you are fulfilling what makes you and your loved ones happy? My five steps to de-stress works in all situations, just keep what you most value in your mind and follow the five steps below whenever you feel stressed or overwhelmed.
"Summer was a book of hope. That's why I loved and hated summers. Because they made me want to believe." -- Benjamin Alire Sáenz
- Pause -- take a deep breath, then another and then another. Repeat until you feel the adrenaline coursing through your veins begin to slow down. If you have to remove yourself from the immediate surroundings temporarily to regain composure, do so if at all possible. A mini time out will help you gain some perspective before you say or do something you may regret.
Pause. Assess. Gather. Decide. Execute. PAGDE will help you determine the best course for your current dilemma and also give you insight into how to handle future life changes. Relax - by just asking the questions during each life change, you are already on the course to increased opportunity for joy!
Remember Eustress -- defined as "moderate or normal psychological stress interpreted as being beneficial for the experiencer." We always have some stress in our lives, that is what makes life rewarding, like a roller coaster ride or a gripping movie -- the challenges and the ups and downs makes the life journey more fun. So have a fabulous summer, full of play, work and a bit of stress too.