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Basic survival skills
How to prioritize needs in survival situations
How to adapt to extreme situations
The idea behind a designated worry break is not to succumb to all the stress, but to concentrate your worrying time into a productive “session” of sorts. Stressful thoughts find a way to intrude and disrupt your daily life. By scheduling a separate chunk of time to address them all, you’ll be able to focus on other things throughout your day.
Choose your time to stress. Mark it in your calendar, set a reminder, and don’t bail on yourself. To start out, carve out 15 or so minutes once a week.
When your scheduled worry break rolls around, it’s time to stress. But the key is to stress constructively.
Try to get your worries down in words. Writing them down in list form is daunting, but an excellent practice in perspective. It helps to take abstract, overwhelming emotions surrounding each stress item, and then transforms them into what is bothering you on a more concrete (and manageable) level.
Next, dedicate time to each item on your list. Circle the ones that are ostensibly in your control. For instance, “my purpose in life” is a tad too abstract to tackle in this 15 minute session. However, something like “making time for my family” is a starting place for creating actionable solutions. For each stress item, try to brainstorm several potential solutions, e.g. “ask ____ for help” or “schedule a proper date night.”
Not every source of stress has an actionable solution; in fact, a lack of obvious solutions is probably the source of a lot of your stress.
As you get used to attending to your stressful thoughts, here are some guiding questions to ask yourself:
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