How to bounce back from life’s curve balls

How-to-bounce-back-from-life-curve-balls

Resilience is essential to our health, happiness and wellbeing. However, it can be eroded when we become overwhelmed by the unpredictable events that intrude into our lives. So how do we survive the events that are beyond our control?

The answer lies in our daily determination to be intentional about cultivating a positive, and therefore more resilient, state of mind. Here are six strategies that, when practised consistently, will help you to build resilience.

Limit your use of social media and news

Social media and other news outlets are often an unrelenting source of bad news, yet we find them addictive. We have a constant need to know what is happening next, and find ourselves going back to the next source for more information.

Our fascination and curiosity makes us a prisoner to the latest news, which can elevate our anxiety. Setting a time limit on how long to use social media and read the news will diminish the impact this has on our resilience.

Stretch each day

Anxiety and stress are stored in our body—tightening muscles, headaches, nausea, stomach-aches, diarrhoea, constipation and indigestion can all be side effects of this.

Whether you choose to do yoga, Pilates or your own set of stretches, the important thing is to keep stretching daily to prevent stress shutting down your body.

Pay attention to nature

Nature is a natural stress reducer, so take the time to absorb colour, pattern, movement and whatever catches your eye. If you live and work in a concrete jungle, look at the sky and observe cloud formations, or an isolated tree or plant. Take the time to breathe in its life-giving energy and recognise how it makes you feel.

Repeat a positive affirmation

By choosing a positive affirmation like “I am worthy” or “I will have a good day” and repeating this to yourself through the day, your mind will begin to believe it. You may not be convinced of the truth of the affirmation immediately, but after a while it will become second nature to you.

Smile

Have you noticed how you feel when someone smiles at you? We feel warmer, less fearful and anxious, and welcomed. On the other hand, a frown sends the message that we are intrusive, irritating or unwelcome. We feel lighter when we smile and also extend this happiness to others by inviting them to smile back. 

Make a grateful journal

At the end of each day write what you are grateful for in a journal, and your resilience will increase. Grateful people are happier and easier to be around. By expressing your gratitude, you focus on what is good and positive in your life. This will only take a couple of minutes each day, and it will reduce your stress and create a positive mindset.

Do you struggle to ‘bounce back’ when life gets tough? Would you like to develop strategies to build your resilience? Here’s what you need to do: contact Colleen on 0434 337 245 or Duncan on 0434 331 243 for a FREE 10-minute phone consultation on how we can best help you, or press book now to book in our online diary. 

Thanks to Warcry Magazine for publishing this article.

7 Great Apps for Mindfulness

Mindfulness

We know that technology can detract from our relationships and general wellbeing, but what if we turned this around and used it to benefit our health? There are plenty of apps out there that can help you relax, focus, and even go to sleep. Here’s a list of 7 of our favourites.

Stop, Breathe and Think

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A free app that will work on most devices, it recommends varying meditations for you depending on your age, feelings and current mood. Easy to navigate, and with the ability to monitor your progress, meditation cycles range from 3-20 minutes. Having been nominated for a Weebly, it is one of the best.

Calm

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Simply put, Calm will centre you and remind you to be present. Basic in use, you can select a calming image, the time frame of your selected meditation, and if you want it guided. Handy for a small moment of respite or a reminder that lunch break is over; it is available on most devices for free.

Mindfulness Training App

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Whether you have been practicing Mindfulness for years, or are giving it a go for the first time, the Mindfulness Training App will cater to you. Personalised to your own needs and reduce stress, it will teach you how to practice and cultivate Mindfulness. Available on iOS and Android, there is a small cost for this one.

Headspace Meditation

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One of the most well-known and respected apps, Headspace uses interesting and simple graphics that will teach you how to meditate. Implementing a buddy system so you can monitor your progress and work with friends, it includes various activities and meditation cycles that run from 2 minutes to an hour. Catered to fit your moment of need, you can register for their free 10-day cycle and then sign up for a small fee to access the rest of the content.

Smiling Mind

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Especially designed for young people, Smiling Mind is a free app created by therapists. Able to cater for ages from childhood to the mature adult, it is modern, and highly recommended by many professionals. Smiling Mind is free and available on most devices.

Buddhify

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Focusing on different areas of your wellbeing, Buddhify will help you to overcome stress, get to sleep, and live in the present moment. Be guided through each activity in your life with over 80 meditation cycles, and monitor your progress with the assistance of tips for improvement. Stylish in design and the same price as a cup of coffee, it is available on iOS and Android.

Meditation Timer Pro

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If you’re looking for a simple and easy to use app, Meditation Timer Pro is ideal. Helping you to focus with the use of intervals and reminders, it removes distractions and allows you to personify the app to fit your needs. There is a small cost involved for this one, and if you need a reminder to stop and breathe during your day, this is ideal. Meditation Timer Pro is available on iOS.

Do you feel stressed, anxious and/or depressed? Do you want to know more about Mindfulness? Then here’s what you need to do: contact Colleen on 0434 337 245 or Duncan on 0434331243 for a FREE 10-minute phone consultation on how she can best help you, or press book now to book on the online diary.

Dealing with Anger at Work

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Image courtesy of stockimages / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Anger displayed in the work place can come in many forms. Whether you are a boss who is angry at a worker, a colleague who is annoyed at your boss, or a worker who is furious at a peer, there is an appropriate method of dealing with anger in each situation. Having personally been in each of these circumstances, I have realised that it is essential that we acknowledge and respond to conflict in the workplace; however the method of doing so will depend on the professional relationships unique to each work place.

When your boss is angry at you

Your response to an angry colleague will alter depending on their role in the workplace. If your boss becomes angry at you, it needs to be determined whether his/her anger is abusive or is a result of inappropriate behaviour from yourself. Bullying in the workplace is never okay, however if your boss often displays anger there may be little that you can do in an attempt to improve the situation at your place of employment.

The first action in any disintegrating relationship should be to address the issue with the other person; in this case your boss. There is a strong chance that you are not in a position to address this matter with your boss, and they may not care for your opinion. If this is the case, you need to ensure your own personal safety and wellbeing as a number one priority. This may mean that you need to look for other employment.

Depending on the size of the company you work for, there will be grievance procedures which help to solve these conflicts. However, if the company is small and the boss is the owner/director, you are unlikely to have an avenue to follow. You always have the choice and right to notify work safe, but even when you choose to go down this path, you need to ensure your wellbeing and safety.

When you have conflict with a colleague who is of an equal or lower position than you

In trying to understand why anger is being displayed, it needs to be determined whether the person is angry as a result of a specific incident with you, or if they are simply an angry person for what appears to be no apparent reason. If a colleague is angry at you about a specific incident, it is likely a one on one conversation in a calm, professional manner will resolve the situation. This will provide both people with the understanding and opportunity to apologise for a one off incident.

If a colleague is often angry, it is likely the anger is an unhealthy tool they use to get their point across, to make their presence felt, and to feel powerful. As stated previously, the ideal strategy is to discuss the behaviour with the colleague. There is a slight chance that the angry colleague is unaware of their behaviour and following a discussion with them, they will change. The other alternative is that the person won’t be prepared to listen to you. At this point grievance procedures for your company should be implemented.

In your work place, grievance procedures will be similar to the following:

  1. Speak with colleague
  2. If no resolution, speak to your manager
  3. The manager is likely to involve HR If they want too. A number of possible scenarios may follow:
  • The Manager or HR will provide a form of mediation with you and your colleague.
  • The situation is managed through performance in which case it is unlikely you will know the outcome; however you can certainly hope to see a change in behaviour.
  • If you do not agree with the outcome, you can either speak to your manager’s manager or report the incident to work safe.

In all situations with people, it is best to understand that we cannot change them, we can only change the way we respond to them. For example, if person A is angry at Person B, B is unable to change A. B can only change the way they respond to A.

If you feel you are on the receiving end of anger from people, seeking professional support can provide you with strategies so you can respond in a healthier and safer way.

When you are the angry person

The previous situations have dealt with being the recipient of anger. This section will look at the responsibility of the angry person.

Whether you are in leadership/management or a peer to the people you get angry with, you need to take responsibility for your actions. It is highly likely that you feel justified in your actions and comments; however displaying anger at others shows a lack of respect, professionalism, and undermines the value of other people

If you are in leadership or management and you regularly display anger, it is highly likely that your team are under performing and you have a high staff turnover rate; this will be costing you money. By being prepared to review your behaviour and implement different strategies for dealing with stress and pressure, you will not only save yourself work and money, is is quite possible you will have a much happier and productive team.

If you display anger at your colleagues, it is likely you will be limiting your career options. People who regularly display anger at work are identified as bullies and this label can have a detrimental effect not only on their career, but on their sense of self-worth.

As an individual you may enjoy getting angry, however I expect that deep down you are quite embarrassed about this behaviour; you my even feel powerless to control your angry outbursts. Whatever the reason you use anger at work; it can have a detrimental impact on yourself and the people you work with.

Anger is something that can be managed. By seeking professional support, your triggers for anger can be identified and strategies implemented so that you control your anger rather than it controlling you.

If you are experiencing anger at work or are feeling the effects of a colleagues anger and need support then here’s what you need to do: contact Duncan on 0434 331 243 for a FREE 10-minute phone consultation on how Watersedgecounselling can best help you or press book now to book on our online diary.