How do you feel when something doesn’t go as expected or anticipated?
When the book was not released as expected, I felt the same way as when I missed my flight the other day. I was flying from Atlanta and the security and wait at the airport was so long that it kept going on and on. As the time to my flight was approaching and chances of my missing the flight rose, so did my anxiety and blood pressure. How can I remain calm during times like this? I had to use several of the techniques from the book to manage that stress.
How to remain calm when things don’t go as anticipated.
I acknowledged that I am getting worked up. (first step). I calmed my mind and body by doing the feet to floor exercise. (second step). Then I was able to reflect on my issue and possible solutions (third step).
I tried to bring my focus to my circle of influence. Making that security line move faster was in my circle of concern but not in my circle of influence. What was in my control was how I was reacting to that situation. Physically all I could do was to stand ready with my documents and keep my composure in that line which was moving at a snail’s pace.
Mentally, I had all the “what if” worry thoughts.
I knew I could break that cycle if I used the crossroad technique, so I used the mantra “I am doing what I can. There is no sense in suffering before suffering. I will deal with the problem if and when it happens.” There was a chance that I could still make it. I had to repeat the mantra often as it is hard to break the cycle in the pressure of the moment. By the time, I was through the line and ran to the gate, the plane had left. Again, standing in line to talk to the customer service, I was having a hard time keeping calm thoughts. I explored the options but, again, used the mantra to calm my thoughts.
I got standby tickets for the next flight.
Again, there was a chance that I wouldn’t be able to board the plane and may have to wait the whole day until the night flight. I had only a few hours of sleep the night before and my blood glucose was going down. So I repeated the steps again, I acknowledged, calmed down, and reflected. I got some food and water, tried to help reduce my family’s worried thoughts, and said advanced gratitude for reaching home safely. When our name was called to get on the flight, I stood with grace in my heart and safely boarded the plane.
Excerpt from the book Stress to Joy- Chapter 1:
“……Resilience can give you freedom from stress. Freedom doesn’t mean a total absence of stress. Although, when you are tired of the stress, it is natural to wish for it all to disappear.
But that is not practical. Freedom from stress doesn’t mean that there are no stressors; it means that despite the stressors, you don’t experience feeling stressed.
You are not a prisoner of stress. Stress no longer burdens you. You are not fighting it, but dancing with it. Try to happily coexist with all the stressors. Manage your stress before it manages you.
You are transforming it into an opportunity for growth.”
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I share many tools and techniques that I have found to be helpful. They are not intended to replace treatments. Please seek treatment from licensed medical or health professionals as needed. I change all names for privacy.