Nobody smiles their way to success. There will be times when you grimace under the stress, pain and pressure of the journey.
All the top athletes, businessmen, etc. will tell you that success in any worthy endeavor is no walk in the park. More often than not, you’ll be stressed out.
You must become a master at shutting out the stress and become comfortable with being in discomfort.
Like Tim Grover (Michael Jordan’s trainer) says, “Get to that zone where you can shut out all the noise, all the negativity and fear and distractions and lies, and achieve whatever you want, in whatever you do.”
The noise, negativity, etc. – is all stress in different forms. When you learn to shut it out, you’ll not only be more focused, but success will become easier.
That said, you must find ways to de-stress too. You can’t just let the stress within you keep growing without release. Use the pointers below to release your stress.
One of the best ways to give your mind a rest will be to stop using digital devices for a day or two. If these are crucial to work, only use them for work.
Avoid using social media or playing games on your phone and so on. Take a break from the TV too. Let your mind calm down by reducing the amount of stimuli it receives.
Your stress levels will naturally drop too.
- Avoid stimulants
Caffeine is the most common stimulant of the lot. If you’re drinking black coffee without sugar, it’s fine – but some people may find that it causes them anxiety.
If you’re in this category, avoid coffee.
Other ‘stimulants’ are energy drinks, alcohol, cigarettes, etc. Any time something you’re consuming makes you feel ‘better’, you can consider it a stimulant – and most of the time, these stimulants only have short-term effects.
In the long run, they’ll ruin your health and your body will not be in an optimal state.
- Sleep well
Give yourself 7-8 hours of sleep daily. Most people can’t function well with less than 6 hours of sleep. While you may occasionally burn the midnight oil, do not make it a habit.
A lack of sleep will make you tired, unfocused and more stressed out because you have less time to rest your mind and recharge your body. Get sufficient sleep.
- Exercise daily
Ideally, you should exercise at least 5 times a week. Not every day has to be strenuous. Even walking for an hour a day is excellent exercise.
You may choose to do resistance training and high intensity interval training twice a week. This will help to increase your stamina and strength.
The stronger you are, the more energy you’ll have and the better you’ll be able to cope with stress.
- Aim for balance in life
All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. Spend some time doing ‘fun stuff’. Watch a movie, go on a roller coaster ride, bring your family to the zoo, etc.
Break monotony in your life. Very often, businesspeople are so focused on making money that they don’t realize how much of life they’re sacrificing. Building wealth is great, but you don’t want to end up so poor that all you have is money.
Make sure your relationships are good too. Spending time with friends and family can help to de-stress you greatly.
- Find ways to relieve your stress
For some people, it’s yoga. For others, it’s meditation.
Some men prefer hitting a punching bag furiously to relieve stress. Other men may find joy playing video games.
There’s no one-size-fits-all method of stress relief here. Contrary to popular belief, no one method is better than the other.
All that matters is that it works for you. If yoga has no effect on you, but watching stand-up comedy makes you laugh and feel better, why would you waste time doing yoga if you’re stressed out?
Do what helps you. That’s the most important rule here.
Get used to being stressed out because all progress happens outside the comfort zone. But also ensure that you’re doing whatever you can to relieve your stress.
You must find balance here.
Pressure turns coal into diamonds, but it also turns it to dust.
Until next time,
Dominus Owen Markham