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Cope with Stress & Become More Resilient

Face challenges with greater ease

From the CONCERN: EAP Resilience Library

Despite what your social media feeds might show, life has its challenges. If you'd like to be able to handle what life throws at you with greater ease, the following steps can help:

  1. Get the Right Attitude. It is so tempting to assume a "victim mentality" and blame others, especially when it really does seem like it was someone else's fault. Resilient people tend to view life's difficulties as challenges and respond accordingly, with action rather than with fear or blame.
  2. Become Aware. Sometimes people feel overwhelmed by their emotions, and this frightens and immobilizes them. Just being aware of what you are thinking and feeling, without judgement, can help to calm you and give you a chance to decide how you would like to respond to a situation. Try writing down how you feel in a journal.
  3. Take Control. Resilient people believe they're in control of their lives. While we can't control every circumstance, we can control how we respond to circumstances. And that can make a big difference in our attitudes and actions.
  4. Cultivate Optimism. Being an optimist is more than looking on the bright side (though that helps). It's a way of viewing the world where you believe you can get through things, focusing on your strengths and accomplishments, and minimizing your weaknesses and setbacks.
  5. Rally Support. While we ultimately face our own challenges, a supportive friend or group of friends can help lighten the load. Having friends can help you stay healthier and happier throughout life, and cope well with stress.
  6. Laugh a Little. If you're able to laugh at life's frustrations, you enhance your ability to cope with stress and adversity. Those with a good sense of humor tend to experience life as less stressful, are able to bond with others during difficult times, and experience the numerous health benefits of laughter.
  7. Exercise. Yes, exercise has other benefits besides bigger biceps. Endorphins can lighten your mood, and just spending 20 minutes a day doing something besides checking your phone can increase your overall health and sense of well-being.
  8. Get your rest. You need energy to be at your best. Studies have shown that top performers tend to sleep and rest more than average performers. Make sure you sleep enough and time important or difficult tasks when you are well rested.
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