Okay here we go…its 2021 and we are blessed and fortunate to have adapted or still adapting to the new life 2020 demanded from us all. I would describe 2020 as a year of almost a never-ending test of my belief system, my personal relationships and my mental stability.

Yes, it was a roller-coaster ride of note and it looks like 2021 may also have a few more unexpected tummy dropping moments.

What is evident from the past year as we look at ourselves and those around us, is how we respond and handle stress. We all know someone who just never seems to be affected by stress they are just blowing in the wind. Then there is the person who is not coping or think they are coping but exhibit all the signs of stress, like lashing out, having a racing brain and/or heart, stomach-ache, sweating, comfort eating, shaking, etc.

Yeah…I have had a moment or two of wishing I could of taken some words back that ran out of mouth in a stressful moment. Let’s forgive ourselves.

Today you can learn some easy actions to help you cope with stress now and begin to redefine your response to stress.  

What is stress?

Let’s look at what stress is exactly. As defined by the United States National Library of Medicine, stress is a feeling of emotional or physical tension. It can come from any event or thought that makes you feel frustrated, angry, or nervous. Stress is your body’s reaction to a challenge or demand. In short bursts, stress can be positive, such as when it helps you avoid danger or meet a deadline.

The chemical imbalance of not enough dopamine (cognitive alertness), norepinephrine (vigilant concentration), serotonin (sensory satisfaction) just let me flat and not present in the moment.

2021 presents an opportunity to take stock, reprioritize and be truthful with oneself that you have the power to regain your power to respond to stress differently.

Don’t get me wrong, stress is normal. We all have some form of stress each day but it is how one responds to it is the differentiator.  

Stress Assessment

Let’s see how well you are managing your current stress level. Rate yourself 1 – 5, choosing one number and do not rate yourself with a decimal, such as 3.5. Score yourself which best reflects your feelings, thoughts and behaviours when you respond to stress; choosing how true each statement is for you.

I am sure that other people are much better at coping with difficult situations than I am. 
I often find myself daydreaming, procrastinating or doing a mindless activity when I need to take care of something, such as paying a bill. 
I often find myself dropping one of the many balls that I try to juggle. 
I am sure that other people are much better at coping with difficult situations than I am. 
Others have told me that I engage in poor coping behaviours that do not really help me to cope. 
When feeling a high degree of stress, I find that I drink more than two drinks with caffeine or alcohol per day to either perk me up or make me feel more relaxed. 
I start to have physical problems when I feel stressed, such as headaches, stomach-aches, or muscle tension that I am not able to relieve. 
I am not good at prioritizing tasks and I often feel like I need to do everything right away. 
I avoid talking with people about all that I need to do because I am so behind that I think it would be pointless to get into it. 
Many times, I think I am coping well with a stressful life, only to have something happen that shows me I cannot manage the stress. 
Add your score. Email your score to alecia@poshholdingsza.co.za to get your results.

3 Stress Management Strategies

Here are 3 easy actions you can take today, to help you respond better to stress:

  1. Instead of a glass of wine to relax, take a bath. Take 1 cup of Epsom salt, add 10 drops of lavender essential oil to bath. No phone in the bath (smile)
  2. Breath. It’s easy to forget about breathing but it is essential to our existence. Take a deep breath through your nose, counting to 4, exhale through your mouth, counting to 8. Repeat 6 times.
  3. Move your body. Exercise plays a critical role to release the feel-good hormones. Take a 30 minute walk during the time of day which you can focus just on you. No phone calls or answering emails while walking. (smile again)

If you would like to take the free full stress assessment to understand how you are handling stress, please contact me on 066 224 5543 or alecia@poshholdingsza.co.za. I am available for a discovery conversation if you believe you can benefit from stress management coaching.

Alecia Maifadi (BA, CCP)  

Chief Executive Officer, Posh Holdings                            

Certified Health and Wellness Coach                 

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About Posh Holdings

Posh Holdings PTY Ltd
6 Quartz Road
Witkoppen, Ext. 3

E: info@poshholdingsza.com