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The 3 R's of Stress Relief

How do you bounce back when life piles up, you're feeling run down, and the rate you're going just isn't sustainable? Mac and cheese helps, probably more than it should, but we'll get to that.

One breath at a time,
One step at a time,
One deadline at a time.

You stop trying to do it all and give yourself a huge high five for accomplishing the eighty or ninety percent. You give thanks for the people who cut you slack when you need it most and deserve it least.

The 3 Rs of Stress Relief

  1. Rest. I know. Easier said than done. But when your body is breaking down, a little or a lot, you've got to allow yourself to get to bed. You know how our PCs require us to run "Disk Defragmenter" to keep our hard drives in good shape? Think of sleep as disk defrag for your body. If you can't get extra sleep, do the next best thing: Look for ways to slow down or scale back, preferably before you have to.
  2. Rituals. Where would we be without rituals to keep us on track? In times of high stress, they give us a sense of calm and order. Rituals may be fun (winding down with your favorite music) or they may be mundane (making your bed). Whatever form they take, rituals restore your good spirits. They make you feel like yourself again.
  3. Retail therapy (thanks to Anne Lamott for this helpful phrase). We're not talking high-end department store. Fifteen minutes inside a drugstore will work just fine. Grated Parmesan? No problem. Multi-Grain Cheerios? I needed those. Single-serving mac and cheese? Bring it. You get the idea.

All of life is easier when you have what you need—from cold meds to comfort food to a good book. Look for ways this week to take care of yourself. If you don't, who will?

One breath at a time, One step at a time, One deadline at a time.

Gina DeLapa

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Gina DeLapa is America's Ultimate Reminders® Coach, a sought-after speaker, and the proud creator of the Ultimate Reminders® book series. Her wise and witty reminders ("Beware the organization whose response to a burning building is to form a committee") will make you laugh, stir your soul, and inspire your best. If you're not already getting her free Monday-Morning Pep Talk, be sure to sign up now at