Stress Wärnings: Be aware of your resources

Stress occurs when there is a perceived imbalance between demands and resources. It is therefore important to address stress factors, perception and resources when dealing with stress, as the importance of resources is often overlooked.

Resources are key
Resources are the aspects of ourselves and our lives that give us a sense of well-being, competence, security and strength.

Resources can be both external: like places we love to be, things we like to do and people whose company we enjoy, etc.

And they can be internal: like personality traits, professional abilities, good physical condition and health, religion and spirituality, etc.

When we lose touch
When we suffer from stress, we lose touch with our resources in two ways.

First, we start focusing on everything we can’t (or have time for) – we lose touch with everything we can and everything we have.

Second, we often stop doing what is actually good for us, such as eating healthy food, seeing people we care about, exercising, etc.

Important to be aware
It is an understandable reaction because the body perceives itself as ‘in danger’ and thus focuses exclusively on that danger. The unfortunate thing about that reaction is that there is even less to offset the stress factors, and the imbalance and dissatisfaction thus increases.

Therefore, an important part of the fight against stress is to become aware of one’s resources. By drawing on, nurturing and developing these areas in your life, you increase your resilience to the negative consequences of stress.

Although it is important to remember that your resources cannot directly counteract a particular stressor, they can enhance your general well-being and thus improve your resilience to stressors.

Try this exercise!
Take a moment to reflect on what the three greatest resources in your life are right now. For inspiration, you can consider external resources – such as work, family situation, friends, leisure activities, finances and housing – and internal, such as personality traits, skills, physical condition, health, religion and spirituality.

Notice what happens inside you when you think about and connect with your resources and what thoughts and feelings come up and what happens to your body? You may find that your shoulders suddenly sag and your breathing deepens – all signs that your nervous system is relaxing.

Then think about what small steps you can take to improve your contact with your resources in your daily life?

Take good care of yourself!

Source: The Nordic Page




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