Sadly, fear and stress are often related and the two things have a tendency to feed off each other.
It’s vitally important to do as much as you can to reduce your stress levels because high levels of stress have been proven to have adverse effects on your overall heath.
Measuring our stress levels isn’t an exact science and (like most things) we all have different tolerance levels.
But if you’ve decided you need to reduce fear and stress in your life, try out some of these simple but effective ideas.
Do some stress busting stuff
The UK’s National Health Service has a list of 10 things you can do for stress busting:
- Get more exercise – there are lots of apps that will help you monitor your exercise levels and help keep you on track
- Take control – not everything is under your control, so whilst this is a good enough suggestion I’d add letting go of your feelings towards things you can’t control
- Connect with other people – face to face is best but a could second best is using a voice or video call (Skype, WhatsApp, FaceTime, etc) so that you’re not in hermit mode
- Take time out for yourself – whilst interacting with other people is good, so is chilling out and distancing yourself from them. That could be listening to your favorite music, having a nice warm bath, meditating or even just closing the door to your room and putting your phone on silent
- Challenge yourself – this sounds counter-intuitive and your fear levels might rise but the new challenge doesn’t have to be too challenging. It could be as simple as taking up a new hobby
- Kick your habits – you’ve probably got some unhealthy habits. Whilst most of the population has given up smoking, alcohol is seemingly reserved for the over 25’s (for old people like me, I really can’t imagine how one in three of todays 18 – 24 year olds don’t touch a drop of alcohol), too much sugar in your diet. Whatever the habit is, do your best to at least reduce your reliance on it
- Help others – this ticks lots of boxes: being a good citizen, connecting with other people, that kind of thing. Plus it brings you good karma and that nice, warm, inner glow that happens when you know you’re doing something good. Volunteering can be a regular thing or a one off – that matters less than the fact you’re doing it
- Work smarter – you’re not going to finish all the tasks you’re supposed to do. And even if you did, because nature abhors a vacuum, more would appear. Learn to prioritize better and not to stress so much over that ever-mounting list of things to do
- Focus on the positives – sometimes our positive thoughts hide away, buried beneath the mountain of negativity that seems to be everywhere. Look for small positives if you can’t find bigger ones but look for them and acknowledge them
- Accept things – much the same as we can’t control everything in our lives, there are some things we can’t change. It’s a lot better to just shrug your shoulders to these things and accept them as they are than fight to change something that just can’t be changed in our life time (if ever)
Face your fears
A lot of self-help people say that fear stands for “false evidence appearing real” but that’s easy to say when you’re standing in a seminar, a lot less easy when fear is staring you in the face and winning.
That said, there’s a lot of sense in the idea of facing up to your fears because a lot of the time whatever fear you think is there is actually more afraid of you. A bit like some of the bullies at school who were good at bullying until someone decided to stand up to them.
Actually, the bullying analogy works really well with fears.
Pick on them, one by one, smallest first.
Bully them in your mind until they wave that little white flag and vanish from your life.
Make it a game and don’t be afraid to keep changing the rules of that game until the only winner is you.
After all, fear hasn’t been fair to you over the years so why should you be fair to it?
Reducing your fears and getting them to quiver and quake will have a beneficial effect on your stress levels because fear has a knack of stressing us out.
If you’d like more help with releasing your built-in fears, hypnosis can be nicely effective with that process.
You don’t even need to visit a hypnotist. Instead, just download an MP3 for releasing your fears and listen to it a few times.