Stress Management Essentials
I recently listened to an insightful talk called “Mastering your state of being” by Eric Edmeades.
It is about stress management through a powerful concept Eric calls “The Hindsight Window.”
That window is the gap between something WE PERCEIVE as bad happening to us and us changing our perspective on the event, reversing our emotions and gaining an insight from it.
It seems difficult at first. But it becomes easy once you learn Eric’s formula for stress management through total mastery of your mental and emotional state.
Here is how it works.
The hindsight window is the passage of time between an event which you perceive to be bad at the time and the time in the future when you can look back and see it as something that was meant to be, as something you are grateful for, you see it as a blessing
You got fired and you got frightened, angry and upset. But few years later you can look back and say,“That was meant to happen, If it had not happened I would not have achieved ..X.., I would not have become…Y.. and I wouldn’t have … Z…”?
The longer your hindsight window is, the less happy you are.
The shorter your hindsight window is the happier you’ll be.
The more time you spend dwelling on the past and resenting it, the less time you have to experience joy and pleasure in the present and the harder it is going to be to achieve lasting happiness.
The shorter your hindsight window, the faster you can feel good, the more time you will have to enjoy your life and the easier it is going to be for you to develop the habit of staying content.
Here’s Eric’s stress management emotional formula:
Resentment of the past = Fear of the future.
Gratitude for the past = Faith in the future.
However much resentment and regret you have about your past, will show up for you as fear of your future.
However much gratitude you have for your past, will show up as faith in your future.
We need to clean up our past so we can look confidently into the future.
But how do we clean our past?
We need to step out of the memory of the event and examine it from the point of view of a bystander and not from the point of view of a participant. This change of perspective and the fact that now we are wiser, more experienced, and have more information and resources will give us the option of assigning a new meaning to the event.
But besides the past, we also have the present and the future.
Which one do you think is the hardest to clean up and which one is the easiest?
When we suspect something is going to be traumatic in the future, we can prepare for it beforehand when our negative emotions are not triggered yet and when Adrenalin is not cursing through our veins.
We can examine our past reactions to similar events, decide on the outcome we desire and come up with a new strategy that is going to give us the desired outcome without the negative emotions the past events have habitually triggered in us.
The hardest to clean up, is the present as in the spur of the moment when the fight or flight response is triggered it is difficult to stay calm,composed and to think rationally. In such cases the physiological responses rule our reactions most of the time
But here is Eric’s stress management algorithm for getting back the control over your thinking, feelings and behavior.
1. An unpleasant event happens
2. Immediately identify the emotion you’re having
3. Decide, if it is serving you. There are moment when our negative emotions are absolutely necessary and appropriate and when they help us survive and deal with the situation in the best possible way.
4. If you decide it isn’t ask yourself; “What emotion would be serving me better?”
5. Then ask yourself, “What would have to happen for me to find gratitude right now?”
Remember – The more gratitude you can find for your past, the more faith you will have in your future.
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