I have been an organizational development consultant for over 20 years and have been teaching executives, employees, groups, and organizations stress management for 28 years.
I’ve spoken and written about how executives can lower their own stress level and the stress level of people around them, and how to manage personal stress and not be a stressor to others. I’ve written articles and have a stress management toolkit that includes a stress management ebook.
Here are three ways stress of others can impact us and our health.
1- When people are stressed they tend to be uptight, not present and have a short fuse.
This is very stressful to us, because we pick up on their stress, start second guessing and stop being comfortable with who we are.
2- We focus on them and their needs and forget about our own which taxes our immune system. We end up worrying that we may set them off if we say the wrong thing.
3- It takes so much energy to be around friends, colleagues or families under stress which increases the secretion of our own stress hormones. We end up on their roller coaster which can give us headaches, backaches and insomnia.
Below I share three of the ten key ways to manage your own stress when other people and their stress is stressing you out.
1- Use deep breathing techniques to distance ourself emotionally and not get plugged in to them and their issues.
2- Catch yourself starting to give advice or “trying to help,” and use self-talk as a reminder to let go and remember that other people can always ask for help, but you’re not a mind-reader if they don’t want to talk. Leave them alone or just leave them for the time being.
3- Limit time around those people, use caller ID, and shut down the sound on our cell phones.