The 2020 SA academic year begins on February 10. Have you packed your varsity stress relievers? You’re gonna need them, but you know that. Have you tried the Mayo Clinic’s 4A’s?
Once you have these four life skills down, you are set for life when it comes to how to effectively relieve stress. This is something you can teach your children one day. Let’s summarise it together.
Varsity Stress Reliever # 1: AVOID
It is important to remember that there is a lot of stress we can learn to avoid. It’s about lightening your load. How?
- Avoid irritants – take charge, Hate the traffic? Leave earlier or take the scenic route. Hate cafeteria queues? Pack your own.
- Avoid being a doormat – set boundaries. Someone causing you stress? Distance yourself, avoid them – they’ll get over it and so will you. Marshall your availability, don’t be amazing for everyone.
- Avoid overloading – drop the ball. if you’re juggling too much, drop whatever matters least. In other words, do what you can and ‘can’ what you can’t.
Varsity Stress Reliever # 2: ALTER
Being the change you want means having the courage to change what you can. How?
- Alter yourself – we have no control over the behaviour of others. Don’t waste your life trying. We can only change ourselves. For that, do the unexpected. When someone jokes at your expense the only reaction you can change is your own, so laugh with them rather than take offence – learn to see the funny side of things.
- Alter your load – work smart, not hard. Group tasks together and get through them all at once. Always start with what you like the least is a great stress reliever at varsity.
- Alter your self-talk if you tend to put yourself down. Your life will become what you repeatedly think and say – mind your words carefully.
Varsity Stress Reliever # 3: ACCEPT
The spirit of acceptance might be the most powerful tool you’ll ever get a handle on. We only need to accept what we cannot change. The moment we do, solutions become clear. How?
- Accept that others are different and honour them their differences. When someone or something upsets us, we have two options; we can either let it grow or we can let it go.
- Accept help – talk to someone, ask for help and accept what is offered to you.
- Accept failures – no one gets it right all the time. Mistakes make us do better next time.
Varsity Stress Reliever # 4: ADAPT
When our expectations exceeded reality, stress is often the result. We can’t change realities, but we can alter our expectations and adapt to reality. How?
- Adapt to the current restrictions of varsity life. Everything is temporary. This is not your life, it’s only a segment of your journey, it’s not the book, it’s just a chapter.
- Adapt to the unexpected. Life happens when we are busy making other plans. Going with the flow of life is a failproof stress reliever at varsity.
- Adapt to challenges knowing you can do this. More is not asked of you than what you are capable of. Tell yourself, “I’ve got this!”