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“Four A’s” strategy for stress management

Many professionals recommend “Four A’s” strategy for stress management which includes the following actions:

  Avoid

  Alter

  Adapt

  Accept

“Four A’s” strategy – Avoid stress

(especially if stress is useless, meaningless and unnecessary)

Sometime women are “fishing” for useless stress. There are many situations-stressors which can be avoided and eliminated.

Avoid Stress

It is important to be able to say “NO” in certain situations – respect your abilities and limits. If people force you to take additional responsibilities which you cannot fulfill, it could lead to unnecessary stress. If you are taking more than you can handle, it also could lead to useless stress.

You can also avoid stress by avoiding “negative” people. We all know that some persons always put us in stress – again and again. Just avoid people who stress you – avoid meeting with them, avoid their work places, avoid their activity places and don’t visit them. If you cannot avoid “negative” people, you can limit the amount of time you spend with them or end the relationship entirely.

Avoid stressing situations or stressful events. If recent news about war or about food products make you stressed, just avoid or ignore these news. If certain music makes you nervous and irritated, just avoid that type of music. If every-day traffic is a stressor for you, just change your road and take longer drive without traffic. If you hate shopping, just use home on-line shopping and relax.

At work you can always avoid stressful discussions. At party you always can avoid unnecessary discussions about politics or religion. At home you can always avoid discussions about step mother or ex-partners. If you are overweight or obese which is making you unhappy, just stop speaking about additional kilograms and special diets.

Doing that you can avoid many stressful situations in your life. Generally speaking, avoid everything which is not important in your life.

“Four A’s” strategy – Alter stressful situation

Protect your health by altering the stressful situations. Sometimes it is not possible to prevent or avoid the stress but it is possible to alter it – for that you need to change your attitude, to change your communication skills and implement positive thinking behavior.

Don’t shout and don’t panic and instead of “fighting” just express your feelings, highlight your concerns in open and respectful way. If you keep silence, the stress could become deeper.

Be open for compromises – ask “negative” people to change their behavior but you also demonstrate your willing to be changed. Positive agreements could be a good solution for stress provoking situations.

Good and effective time management is also crucial – don’t spend useless time for unnecessary things and keep time for important duties and responsibilities. Poor time management can cause a lot of stress.

“Four A’s” strategy – Adapt yourself to not avoidable stress

If you cannot change the stressful situation, try to adapt yourself by changing your expectations and attitude, by using your sense of humor, by accepting different things.

Analyze the stressful situation from more positive perspectives. Daily traffic usually is stressful but try to use your traffic time for chatting by telephone, listening music or learning languages through CD, receiving important news from radio.

Observe stressful events from long-term perspectives (at the big picture). Sometimes we are experiencing short-term stress without any long-term consequences. After few days or few weeks or few months this stress will be even not remembered.

Don’t be perfectionist – perfection is limiting your abilities to cope with stress. Don’t try to be perfect because nobody is perfect. Sometimes good solutions (not perfect) are best solution for adapting to not avoidable stress.

Accept stressors and relax

“Four A’s” strategy – Accept stressors

Some stressors are unavoidable – you cannot avoid death of loved ones, you cannot avoid illnesses or natural disasters, you cannot avoid financial crisis, etc. In mentioned situations the only solution is to accept things as they are. Sometimes it is very difficult to accept negative stressor but in long-term you will be forced to accept it. Longer you refuse to accept the stressor, longer your body will suffer from stress.

Often we cannot control negative behavior of our bosses, family members, directors and managers. Many things in life are beyond our control (especially behavior of other people). Rather than stressing out over them, focus on the things you can control such as the way you choose to react to problems.

Always remember – “What doesn’t kill us makes us stronger.” Accept existence of negative people or their negative behavior and try to avoid consequences.

Sometimes your own mistakes could be stressors – just accept that you also can make mistakes and avoid similar situations in future.

Forgiveness is also kind of acceptance – accept the fact that we live in an imperfect world and that people make many mistakes. Protect yourself from stress – forgive and move on.

 


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