When you are beyond stressed, there are very few self care remedies that you feel like doing.
Even if they are going to do wonders for you like exercise or breathing or meditation.
Honestly, when I am beyond, I could care less about what is going to be good for me. I just need to feel better RIGHT NOW.
Last post we talked about catching stress early so you have a better chance of actually caring about the things that can save you from spiraling into being super snappy with your loved ones or feeling like you are losing it all together.
This post is about when you are too far gone and stress is an overpowering force.
Here are three things you might need to know when you are beyond stressed:
ONE: Give it somewhere to go.
Stress is essentially feeling a lot of pressure. That pressure needs to go somewhere. So, you need to give it somewhere to go.
I’ll give you some examples:
Like the angry, world-isn’t-fair, everything-sucks-bad kind of venting. Do yourself a favor and make sure the person that is hearing you vent is not going to try to solve it for you. Let them know: I need you to just listen and tell me that everything I’m saying is valid and totally true even if I sound crazy. Any advice, problem solving, or attempts to soothe you will probably only make it worse. Why? Because it is putting up resistance to the pressure you are trying to let out. Solutions and being rational can come afterward.
–You might feel like you need to take action.
So, get a list going of the things you need get down that will bring your stress down. Write done the projects or categories and the things to do underneath them. For a bonus step, schedule it out about when you are going to take care of those things. Sometimes part of the problem is feeling like you don’t know how you are going to get it all done.
–You might need to hand it over.
Yup. You might need to ask for help. You might need to ask your spouse or a family member to take it over or hire someone to do some of the things. That could bring up guilt. I know. Once you hand it over, I promise the relief will help with the guilt. Guilt you can sort through (here’s some help), getting into an accident or a bad fight with a loved one or getting sick as a result of stress are more challenging (read: they add more stress on top of stress) than dealing with guilt.
TWO: Forgive yourself for blowing up.
You are beyond stressed and you lost it. You yelled, you acted badly, you drank too much. Whatever you did, it’s OK. Not that hurting someone is OK or treating yourself badly is OK, but you can repair any damage that was done.
At the end of the day, losing it probably led you to accept or figure out a solution for the stress. Because your feelings went to that level of intensity that was untenable, you found a solution. So, repair any damage and forgive yourself. You’re OK. It’s OK.
THREE: Realize that when you are coming down off of a stressful time, sometimes it can be like trying to slow down a Mack Truck.
Everything that goes up must come down. If you are beyond stressed, there will come a breaking point. You will be forced to slow down, by your body or your feelings or the stressful period will come to an end.
You may have been dreaming of the moment you get on that plane where you get to finally let go. You’ve been telling yourself “if I can just get to x day”. Yes, relief will be on it’s way, but it might be a couple days after you expect.
When you try to slow down, it is like a Mack Truck down shifting after driving at high speeds. There is a lot of tension. You might feel out of sorts (cranky, having a hard time putting away your phone or computer, etc) if you try to slow down abruptly.
So, either accept that the first two days of your vacation might not necessarily be the easiest so you aren’t disappointed. Or schedule some activities right after you reach that deadline that was causing so much stress. Activities that you like, of course. Then do your beach/relaxing days.
That will help you transition from high stress mode a little easier down to relaxation mode.