We have all been there. Stress can do some crazy things to us emotionally,
mentally, and physically. Learning how different emotions impact us in times
of stress can take years to learn how to recognize and understand. The first
step is always self-awareness. Becoming aware of the triggers that cause the
change of emotions and the way your body reacts to high stress situations
like sports competition or finals at school is the first step in maintaining a
healthy balance both mind and body.
Weakness in this subject, we can all relate to, is approaching these situations
from a learning standpoint, rather than a flight or fight scenario. Sitting in
discomfort is not something we are innately programmed to do. It is a
practiced skill. Stress of any type is not something we want to delve into more
and analyze in the moment, however, doing so will allow us to learn how to
handle it better in future situations. Steve Graef, PhD, a Sports Psychologist at
The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center created an acronym that
puts a stressful situation into actionable steps.
P- Positive Self-Talk
It can be a daily affirmation, a mantra, or a mental reminder to keep your head in
“You got this”
E- Embrace Adversity
Look at adversity as a chance for growth. Every time allowing yourself to dive in a
little deeper mentally and physically. These situations stack upon each other
creating an armor of resiliency every time.
R- Reverse Engineer
Look back to times when you felt most confident and perform at your best. What
tools, mindset, surroundings, etc. allowed this?
F- Focus on the now
Be mindful and stay present during the task at hand. Everything else can wait.
-If one area of your performance or life isn't going particularly well, it's
not the end of the world. Keep learning, growing and evolving.
REST and recovery. You need it. Make time for this, especially after big events like
a competition or school finals.
T- Talk it out
Don’t be afraid to share your thoughts, feelings, and emotions with friends, family,
or a professional. It is absolutely necessary and highly encouraged.
Getting a hold on your emotions and staying steady in stressful times can lead to healthier outcomes. It is
also a way to practice self care so that further down the line as you encounter other situations that may bring
on stress, you are able to face them with resilience and grace.
RISE Blog Contributor