Get Organized To Reduce Stress [Mission #30]

Get Organized, Reduce Stress

Welcome to Mission #30 of our 52 Get Organized Missions.

For some of us, being organized is an end in itself – a sense of order and freedom from clutter bring us pleasure and happiness.

For the rest of us, being organized is a means to an end – a smarter path to the things we want. By applying a little thought and planning, we increase the chances and reduce the effort of achieving our goals.

Managing stress is one such goal. Many of us deal with daily stresses, but few of us take an organized approach to thinking about what stresses us out, and how to better handle these triggers. So let’s spend this week’s 30 minutes doing just that.

Get Organized Mission #30: Organize Your Personal Stress Management Plan

Step 1: Identify Your Stress Triggers

List the triggers that raise your blood pressure or get that vein on your temple popping.

Your list might include:

  • Getting caught in traffic
  • Children misbehaving
  • Work deadline approaching
  • Speaking in a meeting
  • Giving a presentation
  • Asking for something you want
  • Returning a faulty purchase
  • Arguing your point
  • Being interviewed
  • Dealing with a difficult person

This is your list – write what stresses you.

Step 2: List Techniques for Managing Your Stress Triggers

These could be techniques that have worked for you in the past, ideas you’ve heard or read about, or simply things that feel relaxing to you.

For instance:

  • Take a deep breath
  • Change your perspective
  • Excuse yourself to another room
    and collect yourself
  • Picture a calm scene
  • Stand/sit straight
  • Flick a band on your wrist
    as a reminder to stay calm
  • Count to 10
  • Smile or laugh
  • Picture a difficult person
    as a frightened child

Step 3: Pair Each Trigger with a Stress-Management Technique

Now, for each stress trigger you identified in Step 1, choose a technique that feels right from those you listed in Step 2. This will become your personal stress-management plan.

For instance:

When this happens:

I’ll try this technique:

When the children misbehave… I’ll change my perspective to 10 years from now, when I’ll miss the days of their childhood
When I get caught in traffic… I’ll picture a calm scene
When I’m dealing with
[name of difficult person]…
I’ll picture them as a frightened child and feel kinder toward them
When I”m about to return a faulty purchase… I’ll smile to feel more relaxed and to look less hostile

You get the idea!

Step 4: Put Your Stress-Management Plan into Action

Read your personal stress-management plan each day so you have your responses memorized. Then, when one of these triggers hits – you’ll be ready!

Simply by thinking about what stresses you out, and preparing yourself for these triggers, you can create a personal stress-management plan to deal more effectively with your stresses.

Dos & Don’ts

  • Don’t second-guess your lists. If making toast stresses you, list it as a trigger. If yodeling quietly to yourself relaxes you, list it as a technique.
  • Do take the time to think about the things that stress you. Your plan will be far more effective.

Extended Organizing Mission Options

Want to go beyond this 30-minute organizing mission?

  • Do this mission with your best friends. Come up with things that stress you individually, then brainstorm techniques as a group.
  • Do this mission with the family. As for friends, list your stress triggers individually, then brainstorm techniques as a family.

Ready, Set, Go!

Remember – move quickly, act fast, don’t overthink.

Start The 30-Minute Timer

Before You Go: Check In!

Please add a comment to say you’ve completed this week’s Get Organized Mission and you’re keeping your commitment.

And see you back here next week!

Did You Know

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[Image: / CC BY-ND 2.0]

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