Learning to control very stressful situations is almost a survival strategy. The mathematician and astronomer John Lubbock said that a day of worry is much worse than a day of hard work and so it is. The mental energy that we leave in those times when pressure, anxiety, and anguish invade everything is immense.
On the other hand, there is a fact that needs to be taken into account. The coping ability to face and manage these stressful episodes varies greatly from one person to another. There are those who process their reality in a more positive way, who have a more resilient life perspective and see in each challenge, an opportunity for growth and even a challenge.
Others, on the other hand, experience concern for almost anything. Thus, what causes some stress to some, for other people it is a task or a situation, one without greater pressure or anguish. It all depends on our previous experience and those psychological resources that, even if they do not come from the factory, we can learn and make ours.
Keys to control very stressful situations– We know that controlling very stressful situations is a challenge for which we do not always feel prepared. However, what do we really mean by “very stressful moments or situations”?
Although stress is above all a reality that starts from the personal perception of each individual, there are common scenarios or events that most of us can overcome.
Having to face a surgical intervention, deal with legal and judicial problems and even face certain tasks of our work, puts the great majority under pressure. Each one will undoubtedly have more than one example in mind, that which exceeds him and how much it costs to manage.
Thus, and only as an example, when it comes to knowing what a patient’s coping capacity is, two very specific factors are taken into account :
- How do you perceive that complex situation that lies ahead (primary assessment).
- The interpretation made by the person about their ability to face this stressful situation (secondary evaluation).
- Ideally, both spheres are tight. It is advisable to perceive that this challenge is affordable and that we have resources to handle it . Let’s see what resources we must put in place to control very stressful situations.
It’s not about making stress “go away,” but dealing with it- We cannot live without anxiety or stress. These mechanisms have guaranteed our survival, have driven our progress and have acted as that emotional and behavioral conjunction, capable of allowing us to generate changes. Therefore, something we should know about very stressful situations is the following:
- Stress must go in our favor to help us generate adaptive behaviors.
- It is not necessary to make it disappear but to control and regulate it.
- To regulate stress, we must each find those strategies that best suit our needs and personality. This process takes time and requires commitment.
- The coping with stress starts from three very specific dimensions that we will analyze next.
Strategies focused on evaluation, the key to controlling very stressful situations
And you, how do you evaluate that challenge, that problem or that complicated situation that lies ahead? From the moment we label these situations, our thinking, our emotions and behaviors are completely determined. Thus, ideas such as “that surpass me,” “it’s a horror,” “something impossible,” “escapes my abilities,” “it’s a disaster,” etc., will end up further intensifying stress and anxiety.
We must, therefore, take care of the type of evaluation we make regarding this event that lies ahead. Do not fall into easy positivism or even less in drama. Hence, the most appropriate would be to make these types of evaluations:
It is something I must do. It’s normal for me to feel stress, but I’m going to face it. I know it is a difficult situation. It may not work out, but I will learn from this no matter what.
Emotion-centered strategies- As we well know, the emotional plane is a capital element when it comes to controlling very stressful situations. They can give us wings and impulse to face anything or they can place us in the corner of fear and blockage. To the extent possible, it is essential to manage and manage that internal universe so that it goes in our favor.
How? These are some keys.
- Identify what emotions orbit within you.
- Streamline Detect what irrational thoughts feed those emotions.
- Practice breathing and relaxation exercises. Practices such as mindfulness can help us in these situations.
- Problem-centered strategies
- We have already learned the importance of evaluating the problem or that challenge in a realistic and appropriate way; avoiding ideas that invalidate and feed the anguish. We also know that it is essential to regulate our emotions so that they go in our favor. What do we have left to learn to control stressful situations?
We lack perhaps, the most relevant: have a plan.
- Develop strategies that allow you to address that problem in the best possible way.
- Create your own survival kit to be prepared for anything that can happen.
- If it is a job interview, prepare it. If it is a medical appointment, practice relaxation and visualize any scenario and situation that may happen to feel more prepared. If it is a business negotiation, document yourself, train yourself, learn communication techniques, etc.
To conclude, throughout our life cycle will come more than a highly stressful situation. It is normal to feel fear, but the key to these crossroads is to act in spite of the anguish, to overcome ourselves in every adverse circumstance.