No one teaches the one on one on stress, like Promod Batra in his book ‘Simple ways to Manage Stress’. One word on the buzz these days is ‘stress’. A lot of people we know are falling victims to it. The end result, diabetes, ulcers, heart conditions, psychiatric problems, depression, and the list goes on. What we do not hear is however, the cure for stress.
Batra in his book, says that stress is like embers. They can be controlled to be harmless embers, or we can convert them in to a huge fire. Life is like a series of choices and how we manage stress is one of the choices. One can attain the attitude that ‘I will do my best, and then to hell with it,’ or worry endlessly as our life unwounds daily.
Most stress is caused by the absence of ideas on how to manage them. One simple way is to think of ways to deal with the issue, then ask questions regarding it so that it is thought over, and finally once the solution is heeded, act on it! One formula to go with it is the MISER concept, where the key to the letters is; ‘Merging problems’, Improving solutions’, ‘Simplifying ways’, ‘Eliminating stressful ways’ and ‘Reducing stress’.
Indulging in simple pleasures rather than choosing luxurious ways to keep one ‘happy’ is another tip coming from Batra. Watching the way one thinks is also a key factor here. Thinking positive thoughts rather than brooding over negative ones lessens stress by great degrees. Here the BIBO and the GIGO term is employed. Which stands for ‘Bad ideas In and Bad ideas Out’ and ‘Good ideas In and Good ideas Out’. Both should be used simultaneously.
A person should always be ready for being fired says Promod Batra. According to him, you should not fall in love with your company, remember, you can always fire it, and in case the opposite happens you should have a ready safety net ensured to help slacken the fall.
Before getting the thought of changing those around you, you should learn to change yourself according to people. After all, you can not change your father, your mother, your wife or kids, not even your boss, so it is best that in order to stay stress free, you should change yourself first.
Thinking and planning before hand of tasks and events decreases stress by mounds. Personal management is the goal here. Once the list is made, mental or proper, one should get down to it in no time. Time management also comes along in the kit. In order to find out how to manage your time well so that everything gets done by schedule you need to find out where the time is being wasted. Then you shift your minutes from the waste bin to your table and use them effectively.
Next in line is the churning comparison we do all the time. The secret to that is-, ‘don’t do it’. The only thing you should be comparing is yourself with your potential and learn to understand that this varies from man to man.
Anger management is another story. You should realize that every ten minutes you spend being angry, you lose 600 seconds of happiness. Wisdom lies in not reacting to impulse, and this is a great habit when it comes down to reducing stress.
Not all of us can be presidents of states or the director generals of multinational companies. So learn to do small small things greatly. You can make heroes and heroines out of your children. Next in line is the moral fruit. Tell the truth even if it tolls. At least you will be less stressed.
One should learn where to set the bar for themselves. This is because needs can be met but greeds never. For that reason, do not make best the enemy of better. Live with the second or even third best positions and options.
Learning to live with the criticism of those around you is another thing Batra talks about in his book. According to him, failure just means that you need to try harder, and the criticism you face should be dealt with intelligently, so that you learn from your mistakes.
One should learn to say ‘sorry’ and ‘thank you’. This helps in keeping the number of enemies down and the friends’ list going. But in both cases mean what you say. Learning to say ‘no’ and accept ‘no’ is also very important. Every time you skip a ‘no’, you become stressful.
Another rule for life is KFP and BFP. This is my personal favourite. These stand for kee farak painda and bahut farak painda. Between these two, the stressless ratio is 90:10. If one can maintain this and keep telling oneself, KFP, one can easily be stripped off stress altogether in daily life.
Richess in the heart comes from the mind. Therefore in order to stay rich at heart learn to give. Usually people follow the give and take rule, but that puts an end to the transaction. In order to keep to the higher road of wisdom, you should use this formula instead; ‘give and take and give’.
According to Martin Luther King, ‘forgiveness is not an occasional act; it is a permanent attitude.’ Hence make forgiveness your attitude. Learn to forgive and forget and more importantly, ‘move on’ after forgiveness.
Good friends who can give good advice should be nurtured as they are natural witnesses to your life. Their advice should be heeded, hence make your house a gathering place of the wise. Staying busy is another way to stay relieved off stress. By ‘trying’ and ‘doing’ one can be stress free.
Goals are important. They help you to stay focused in life. After all, if you reach for the stars, you may not quite get one, but you won’t come up with a handful of mud either. Having said that Batra, goes on to dedicate a whole chapter on learning to accept some dust in your life. Best should not be the enemy of better. One should accept second and third best in B and C categories.
Learning to laugh is the next best thing when it comes to killing stress. Therefore, read funny books, meet funny people, watch funny films, and hear good jokes. Laughter is to stress what water is to fire.
According to Batra, if one wants to be happy for a lifetime, they should love what they do for a living. Everything else is like flowers on the wayside. Keeping a healthy reading habit keeps one from reinventing the wheel. Books contain wisdom learnt ages ago, passed down from generation to generation. So why spend six years to learn through mistakes that which can be learnt from a book within six minutes?
Last but not least, the parting words of Promod Batra are to maintain silence in face of hostility. He says, silence is golden, silence is stressproof, silence is nirvana. Self control for one minute saves a thousand stressful minutes.
So when life throws lemons at you and not candy floss nor ice-cream, learn to make lemonade out of the lemons and sell it like crazy. Be stressfree and stay happy.