It becomes difficult to keep your cool when stress hits your mind like a freight train. Cortisol, the hormone that causes stress, floods your body to keep you alert in dangerous situations. Anxiety increases when you don’t know how to calm your body while facing non-threatening stressors. How can you beat the anxiety and stay sane under stress?
This video explains the science behind stress, the importance of hindsight to prepare, and ways to keep your mind calm and clear.
How to stay calm when you know you’ll be stressed | Daniel Levitin
Under stress, you won’t be at your best. To aid in staying on top of your stress levels, you need to put relaxation tools in place. When cortisol is high, many systems in your body tend to shut down. This is actually useful in life-or-death situations that have to do with basic survival. If you are face-to-face with a predator, your body won’t focus all of its energy on something nonessential. That would be silly!
Your body is constantly finding the best way to keep you alive. So, when you face the stress that increases your cortisol levels in your body, it will throw rational thinking out the window. Understanding beforehand that brain fog or forgetfulness may happen during stress may open your eyes to mistakes you could be making.
By preparing beforehand, you can discover ways to make life easier for yourself when you’re in those high-pressure moments. You know yourself better than anyone else…how can you make life a little easier for future stress-filled you?
If you’re traveling on a red-eye flight, keep your luggage and passport lined up by the door so you don’t forget them during the rush of leaving. If you have a big meeting coming up, maybe you can schedule the babysitter for an extra hour to give you some extra time to prep the night before. Only you can decide what’s best for you in your moments of stress!
You can stay sane under stress, but you need to prepare. It is important to understand that your body is not working at its full potential for productivity when under extreme stress. Knowing this, you can implement ways to keep your mind clear, make good decisions, and prepare for the pressure before it hits. Then when the stress does come, you are not focusing on the small issues but rather on finishing the task at hand. If you can train yourself to think ahead now for those inevitable situations, your future self will thank you!
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