Are you your own worst enemy—your biggest stressor? Do you engage in behavior that will often lead to a stress-producing incident? Listed below are several behaviors or situations that you would do well to consider eliminating from your daily routine:
- Some women carry really large purses which contain everything that they will need from sunrise to sunset. Trying to locate an item in it—particularly in a rush—can be quite stressful. To break the “everything but the kitchen sink” habit, note how often you actually use each item in your purse each day. If the answer is never, then it may be a good candidate for leaving at home. Try carrying only the basics such as your wallet, lipstick, and keys.
- Do you shop with your purse open as if to say to a would-be purse snatcher, “Welcome; come on in”? Further, an open purse allows items to fall out of it. I live in a hilly area and am spilling the contents of my purse when I go down the hills. This is frustrating but who can I blame for self-sabotage?
- Do you realistically plan for traffic or things not going as scheduled? Are your assumptions too optimistic as to how long it will take to complete a task or drive to an appointment? The truth of the matter is that I could indeed do things within the bounds of my optimistic time frame if I were the only person on the planet. But things happen. Rather than bemoaning certain realities, you simply need to anticipate them.
And yes, I’ve been guilty of each infraction above. But what I’ve learned is that it pays to reduce most of my daily activities to a routine. Good planning and forethought are critical to minimizing self-caused stress. They will not reduce you to a life of boredom but rather will give you more time to plan something exciting and fulfilling.