I had a lovely conversation with my mom yesterday. We were doing our usual catch-up; I was telling her about what me and the kids were up to and she was just starting her day (we live on different continents.) As she was making her coffee in my awesome mug that she stole from me (I know because we were video chatting), she shared a incredible “personal win” with me.
She said, “you know, Jenny, I was looking through my medicine cabinet and reviewing what vitamins I had that might be expired or expiring” (she is very organized), “and I came across these anti-stress vitamins I used to take all the time. It occurred to me that I haven’t taken these pills in the longest time. I realized that since having removed myself from certain things and relationships in my life that I was always stressed out around, I don’t need them anymore.” (Cue celebratory dance.)
This was incredible update from my mom. I had no idea about these pills/vitamins she used to take, but I was so happy to hear (and see her smiling face that told me) that she had successfully decreased her level of stress by letting go of the stressors in her life that were triggering that stress.
What I loved about my mom’s share and win is that it teaches us a valuable lesson for how we, too, can create a healthier, happier lifestyle for ourselves. Much of the resources available to us for helping us relieve stress focuses on relaxation and breathing exercises or activities. While these tools are valuable for keeping our hearts and minds healthy, being clear about what exactly triggers that stress is extremely valuable, as well. In fact, this might be the first step you want to take to help you de-stress.
Ask yourself: Am I inviting things (or people) into my life that I really do not like or want?
If you are feeling stressed, think about who or what you may be inviting into your life that is triggering this stress in you.
- Are you spending time with people you don’t really like, or who do not share the same values as you?
- Are you dating someone who you do not really enjoy spending time with (or respect), but are continuing to date this person because you are enjoying the attention and the fact that you are dating?
- Are you saying yes to way too many social or work-related opportunities because you are afraid of missing out?
- Are you holding on to a certain job because you are afraid of what would happen to you if you left?
- Are you holding on to certain people in your life because you are afraid of hurting their feelings…or of you being alone?
If you answered yes to any of the above questions, you may very well be inviting more stress into your life (without even realizing it.) Be aware that every time you say yes to one thing, you are saying no to something else. In these cases you might be saying yes to everyone else, but yourself.
It is time to yes to you!
Be courageous and bold and take the steps to let go of the stressors you have invited into your life. Doing so might seem scary at first; having been left with what feels like a void. I encourage you to use what feels like this void as an opportunity for you to focus on and create all that you DO want in your life.
As always, please feel free to be in touch anytime with any questions you may have, by either contacting me here or in the comments below.
In support and admiration,
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