I really wanted to name this post, "What do to When you Feel like you are About to Lose your Sh*t" but I thought that might elicit the wrong response. Without going into too much detail I will say that I am very busy (in a good way) at work, dealing with family issues and trying to adjust to new financial realities and have been feeling overwhelmed with life.
Whenever I am stressed my patterns of self-destructive behavior start to kick-in and for now they are manifesting themselves in the form of extreme hunger that results in over-eating (usually fast-food) and an extreme desire to hit the mall (or the internet) and do some impulse shopping.
Indulging these behaviors is fun but then the hangover ie-guilt that comes after is too much to bear. Therefore I have decided that it is time for some new ways to manage stress, here's what I have so far:
1) Do Things for Others: My friend ran the L.A Marathon on Sunday and my other friend and I decided to go cheer her on. The day before I did something completely out of character and offered to make some encouraging posters for my friend (the runner). Normally, I would not have offered to do this because of my lackluster artistic abilities but I was so stressed that coloring seemed like a great escape. I found myself enjoying the task and it felt great to cheer on my friend while she accomplished such a feat. The old adage "tis better to give than to receive" has some truth to it.
2) This is Not the Time to Feel Guilty for What You Aren't Doing: We all have those things we have on the back burner, you know doing our taxes, cleaning our attic etc. For me, it's starting an exercise plan. Every week/day that I don't do it, I feel guilty over it. I decided that with all of the million things I need to do. I need to be ok with not being able to accomplish all of my goals and being proud of myself for keeping up with other things like blogging etc.
3) No Matter How Crazy Life Gets, Leave Some Time for Yourself: It's easy to forget about ourselves when we are taking care of everything and everyone else, but you will not last very long if you don't take some time to decompress. I take a few minutes every night to read a book, a magazine or watch re-runs on TV Land or find pretty pictures on Pinterest for my blog posts. This also helps me sleep as I clear my mind of all the craziness from the day. Do whatever you enjoy. Another friend told me that her exercise time is precious because it allows her to unplug and not be bothered by anyone. Also this is probably not the best time to forget to go to therapy. :)4) Keep Calm: Don't lose your sh*t, because if you do then you will spend all of next cleaning up the mess you made this week because you pissed everyone off. Just keep calm and be like Kate Middleton: classy, poised and of course, well dressed.
I am still working on this list, but I want to know, how do you deal with stress? How do you keep it together during stressful times?