4 Tips to Handle the Stress of a New Module
Andy had a lot going for him in life. He had a wife and two small kids and an extended family that rivaled some small towns in size. Andy and his own little branch of the family lived in a charming little house in a quiet neighborhood, the kind where the highest branches of the old trees meet way above the center of the street.
While Andy had a lot going for him, he also had a lot going on. His family was Andy’s world, but it also came a lot earlier in life than he ever thought that kind of responsibility would. He had not finished the college degree he always wanted. This kept him from pursuing the type of work that he dreamed of. It also made supporting his family difficult. So like a lot of other people, Andy put in as many extra hours at work as he could.
Finally, when he couldn’t take that nagging feeling anymore, Andy took the plunge. He enrolled in online college courses so he could move forward, toward the degree he always wanted. The feeling of actually working on his big goal was incredible. So was the stress. Each time he completed a module, he could see the progress. He could see his goal getting nearer. But when the start of each new module came around, the stress welled up in him like a drum beating in his stomach and head.
To cope with these feelings, Andy looked at four key areas he could work on, things to handle the stress of each new module. These tips can help anyone as they encounter new module stress. Take a look, and then look at your next module with cool confidence.
- Take care of your physical health
Perhaps the most important thing you can do to cope with stress is to take care of yourself. The more strength and energy you have, the more you can take on. It can feel like a waste of time when you have so many other demands on your schedule, but taking time for yourself is vital. This includes getting enough sleep, exercising, and eating right. Try to set aside regular time for each of these things. If your schedule allows, get to bed early and get up early for a strong morning routine of exercise, meditation, hydration and healthy food. You will be amazed at what you can accomplish when your body is at its best.
- Take charge and manage your time
One thing we have to realize when we are burdened with too much to do is that sometimes we cannot do it all. That’s okay. You want to do your best, but there is only so much time in a day. And you need to take care of number one while meeting all of those deadlines. So when your to-do list is just too long, go through that list and make adjustments. Prioritize the things that must be done, and deemphasize the things that can wait. You want to be reliable and you want to get things done, but you don’t want to burn out trying to do too much.
- Use active stress reduction techniques
When you feel that overwhelming sense of stress coming on, take a quick break. Actively counter your stress with proven stress-reducing techniques like meditation and self-hypnosis. Find calming words or thoughts that can momentarily take your mind off the demands of your schedule. Just a few minutes of focused meditation can give you the clarity of mind you need to get right back to the tasks at hand.
- Put things into perspective
This final tip might not be what your boss or instructor wants you to hear, but it is for the best. The truth of the matter is that none of the demands on your schedule are likely to change the course of human history. The world will likely continue spinning even if you don’t get that project done on time. Not to downplay the importance of anyone’s work or studies, but when it comes to your health and sanity, sometimes you have to let a few little things go. That is not to say that you shouldn’t try your best. You should. But you should also keep these things in perspective. Get things done, but also realize that they shouldn’t tear you up inside.
If these tips make you want to tackle another module, check out these latest course offerings and keep working toward your goals.