5. Not enough time for stress relief
This is an extension of being overextended, and may be a sign that you always come last in your own life. Learn to schedule time for yourself to relax and to play. If you write personal time on your schedule the same way you do appointments with others, you’ll be more likely to actually do it. Join a class or group that meets regularly for a relaxing activity such as dancing, stretching or meditation, or schedule a regular massage, manicure or facial, so you’ll have a guaranteed place to relax.
6. Feeling unbearably tense
If your anxiety is this high, you may need therapy. Anxiety and panic attacks are among the easiest things to fix in counseling sessions. You are probably running non-stop negative self-talk, which keeps you anxious about everything. Try affirmations and/or prayer to counteract the running commentary in your mind. Learn to breathe deeply from your diaphragm when you feel anxious—it slows your heartbeat and calms you down.
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7. Frequently pessimistic
A negative attitude is a result of negative self-talk, and of a negative attitude probably learned in childhood. There are many self-help books which will guide you in learning to change the nature of your approach to life. Techniques such as prayer and affirmations, counting your blessings, and setting small goals every day will help you turn this around.
8. Upset by conflicts with others
All conflict is upsetting. The key is to reduce the amount of conflict in your life. Many of the above techniques, such as anger reduction and positive self_talk, will contribute to improving your relationships with others. In addition, you can learn better social techniques such as active listening, positive regard, win-win negotiation and clear communication which will eliminate the source of conflict. Learn to listen to others (even when you don’t agree) and, before speaking, consider how your words might feel to the other person. Treat other people more as you would like them to treat you, and, most important, stop and think before reacting to someone else.
9. Worn-out or burned-out
Burnout is the result of feeling overextended or ineffective for a long period of time. Most of us can deal with small amounts of frustration or feeling overwhelmed, but if it goes on too long, we lose all our motivation, and become burned out. Motivation comes from celebration and appreciation, so learn to celebrate each little accomplishment, and seek appreciation when you need it. If you have trouble doing that, perhaps it’s time to make a career change or to change some other aspect of your life.
10. Feeling lonely
Loneliness may not result from actually being alone, but more from feeling misunderstood or not valued. People often isolate themselves because they feel inadequate in social situations. Value the friends you do have, and make new friends by attending classes or other group events where you can focus on a task or assignment. This will take the pressure off your contact with other people, and give you something in common with them. Be wary of spending too much time on your computer, in chat rooms, etc. These activities absorb time, but do little to dispel loneliness. Make sure you schedule some time with a friend at least once a week, and if you don’t have friends, then use that weekly time to take a class or join a group (for example, a book club or sports group ) which will give you a chance to make new friends.
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(Adapted from It Ends With You: Grow Up and Out of Dysfunction)