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How to Manage Micro-Stressors

Micro-stressors are small moments of stress that are manageable on their own; but the problem with the little things is that they can build up extremely quickly. If you have not done so yet, we recommend you read the companion piece to this article: “What is Micro-Stress?” which covers the causes and dangers of micro-stressors.

Here we are going to learn how to identify and manage the micro-stressors that appear in everyday life.

How to Manage Micro-Stress

Unfortunately, completely irradicating stress from our lives would be an impossible feat. The best we can do is show you how to manage the stress that you do have so that it does not overwhelm you.

There are three things you need to do to manage your micro-stressors:

1. Identify

You can’t fix a problem if you don’t know what’s causing it. The first step to managing micro-stress is identifying which stressors are affecting you. When you read through “What is Micro-Stress”, some – if not all – of the types and causes of micro-stress must have sounded familiar.

Take time to consider where the micro-stressors in your life are coming from, keeping in mind that they may be difficult to identify. Many of us are used to shrugging off negative interactions and emotions, but failing to recognize that you have been through a stressful situation or event will only make the situation worse.

2. Decompress

Once you have isolated the micro-stressors in your life, you need to learn how to identify them as they happen. When you experience one of these stresses the first thing you should do is step back and decompress: whether this means taking a small break, doing an activity that makes you happy, or talking to someone about what happened.

Micro-stressors can look very different in the moment compared to once you have stepped back. It’s crucial that you learn to let go of feelings of defensiveness, anger, or anxiety – they are holding you hostage in a negative headspace. Allowing yourself to decompress can give you a better insight into the true causes of your stress and allow you to take the necessary steps to counter these negative thoughts or emotions.

3. Reflect & Invest

If you notice a pattern, such as specific people or activities that trigger feelings of stress and anxiety, try to disconnect, or take a step back from them. You should also strengthen your connections with the people and activities which evoke positive emotions. Invest in what keeps the stress at bay.

Many of us will prioritize work over our own health, often without realizing it. Become aware of your actions and make a point to prioritize your well-being through diet, fitness, meditation, a healthy sleep schedule, and whatever else applies to you. Research suggest that having a sense of purpose and meaning in our lives can significantly reduce the harm of stress. Give precedence to your relationships and interests.

If this article has shone some light on paint points in your life, find out more about the small things you can do throughout the day to keep micro-stressors at bay with Priority Management. We have worked with corporations, big and small, around the world for over 40 years. Priority Management helps you manage your workload and get back an hour a day for yourself. Invest in yourself – you are worth it.


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