Stress Is Contagious
This week I have my top three tips to avoid catching someone else's stress. Because, a lot of times, it can feel like anxiety loves company, and people who feel miserable want you to feel miserable, too.
1. You have your space, I have mine:
Stress can rub off on you if you let it. Just remember that you are only in charge of yourself, and that means you have this great opportunity to take a step back and focus on you. Sometimes you may want to literally take a step back and go to your office, or take a quick break outside to reconnect with yourself.
2. Emotional elevators:
We all experience different levels of emotions. Sometimes we feel just a small amount of emotion, and other times we're way at the top of our emotional elevator. The cool thing about elevators, of course, is that they go up and down. So, even when we feel overwhelmed, we know we're not going to stay up there forever. Figure out your emotional cues closer to the bottom of that elevator. As soon as you start to notice stress or anger coming up, you can be more proactive in dealing with it, rather than waiting for it to overwhelm you.
3. Radical acceptance:
It's tough when you're surrounded by friends with anxious, angry, upset moods. Instead of trying to change the, or doing your best to ignore it, just notice it. If you can't control it, it's not your problem. By observing what's going on without attaching judgment to it, you'll be much less prone to catching those strong emotions yourself.
Curious to hear more? Does your child, teen, or college student seem super impacted by their friends' stress levels? Reach out to an anxiety specialist! Kelsey Torgerson specializes in child and adolescent anxiety in Clayton, MO and works with kids, teens and college students around University City, Ladue, Brentwood, Creve Couer, Webster Groves, and surrounding areas. You can reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org