Stress is the cause of or the result of much of what is wrong with the working world today. Therefore, any method that instructs a person how to relax is going to have a positive affect on general health and recuperative powers. However, sometimes acquiring a relaxed state of being is easier said than done.

Three important elements that can be useful in releasing stress are insight, goal setting, and mental skills training. These psychoeducational and psychotherapeutic strategies can elevate a person to the higher levels of relaxation, self-awareness and achievement.

Apart from stress, much of the singular bits that accumulate to inform and influence the resulting personality of any person, is that sense however deep it may be buried, of not feeling valued. The value we give ourselves is directly related to the amount of shame and guilt we feel: shame is connected to who we think we are, while guilt is connected to our behaviours. These two powerful emotional levers can be used to manipulate and control ourselves and others. Guilt is often used as a measuring stick when making decisions whilst shame is a mirror used for viewing how we see ourselves and our perception of the value we have to others. Once guilt and shame have been installed within us, it produces residual emotions such as anxiety, despair, and grief, leading to a sense of fear.

These emotions, like many others, can take up a long term residency inside of our psyche, or merely have a temporary impact upon us. It really comes down to a matter of choice and change, or automated repetition driven by habitual thought. For example, if I sense that my life is in danger, then my actions will be grounded in a firm base of fight or flight. This is an example of appropriate fear based on self preservation. Alternatively, toxic fear emanates from ingrained patterns based on negative sense of self.

We can use our self talk to assist in eradicating toxic fear and regaining balance of thought, feelings and behaviour. The following questions will help bring clarity to our temperament.

What thoughts did I have that preceded my feelings of fear?

What is it that most frightens me?

What kind of anxiety/despair/grief underlies my fear?

Is my fear connected to a present circumstance?

Is my fear connected to the past or unknowns in the future?

What steps can I take immediately to lower my sense of being afraid?

Appropriate fear is innate in all of us, but toxic fear is learned behaviour and so adjustments can be made to eradicate it.

The following attitudes and strategies are used by high achievers when they dig deep for extra strength and direction.

  • When the going gets tough, keep moving forward and recognize that it’s not always about the journey, sometimes it really about the destination, and having a successful outcome.
  • Be flexible and be open to the notion of trying new things; after all, why keep doing the same thing each time and expect a different result?
  • Stop comparing yourself to others. Stay with your strategy while remaining confident, focused, and committed to the end result.
  • Apply yourself and ensure you give 100% at all times, and make an emotional investment into the task at hand.
  • Don’t hold back for a future opportunity.
  • Rise to the challenge.
  • Refuse to regard obstacles as excuses for failure and instead, show your greatness.
  • Let go of expectations and worries. Provide a new reaction to missed opportunities.
  • Be decisive about executing your strategy.