Not feeling properly heard and understood by other is a common trigger for stress, and can leave us resentful and unhappy. This session will focus on improving communication skills through developing assertiveness. Dr. Catherine will introduce you a script that you can try out using to help you to communicate more assertively and express your feelings effectively.
2. Find Clarity and Focus
Stress easily accumulates when we have a long-do list, multiple deadlines and competing priorities. It’s very easy to end up living a life that is inconsistent with your personal values, spending lots of time and energy on things that perhaps aren’t what you really value as important. To help you to clarify your values, Dr. Catherine will guide you through a personal values exercise. This will enable you to clarify what is really important to you, to help you to start living more fully by your values and have a more fulfilling life.
3. Release Tension in the Body
One of the physical signs of stress is muscular tension throughout the body or in specific areas like the neck, shoulders, back and head. In this session Dr. Catherine will guide you through a Progressive Muscle Relaxation technique which will enable you to release tension in the body so that you can begin to feel more calm and relaxed.This exercise can be done sitting in a comfortable chair, at any point during the day, but it’s even better to do lying down, especially in bed at night.
4. Peaceful Mind Visualization
Visualization is an effective technique for managing both stress and anxiety. With practice, this technique can enable you to achieve a sense of relaxation in just a few minutes - perfect for when you’ve had a busy stressful day. In this session, Dr. Catherine will guide you through a visualization where you can imagine yourself in a peaceful and safe environment, somewhere that makes you feel calm, happy and relaxed. The more you practice this exercise, the more naturally you will be able to imagine yourself in your peaceful place, and the greater the relaxation effect will be.
5. Mindful Body Relaxation
When we are feeling very stressed, it’s easy to feel ‘stuck in our head’ and disconnected from our physical selves. In this session Dr. Catherine will guide you through a mindful body scan. This is a practice that aims to increase your awareness of the whole of your body to help you to feel calmer, more centred and grounded. You can do this any time of day, but you might like to try it when you’re lying in bed at night, or upon waking in the morning. Be sure to wear comfortable clothing.
6. Deep Breathing For Relaxation
To effectively combat stress, we need to elicit the relaxation response. This is a physical state of deep rest which involves a number of physical changes in the body - your blood pressure decreases, your breathing slows down, your metabolism decreases, your heart rate slows down and your muscles relax. In this session Dr. Catherine will guide you through a simple deep breathing technique.
7. Stress Relief Through Gratitude
Cultivating gratitude is one of the simpler routes to a greater sense of emotional well-being, higher overall life satisfaction, and a greater sense of happiness in life. In today’s exercise you will learn to shift your mind out of stress mode through a regular practice of gratitude. You can do this exercise at any point during the day, but the best time to do it may be before you go to bed. All you need for this exercise is a pen and a notebook or journal.
8. Change A Negative Mindset
When you’re feeling stressed, low or anxious, it’s common to experience negative thoughts. Once you start dwelling on one of these negative thoughts, it often leads to another, and before you know it, you’re stuck in a cycle of negative thinking that ends up making you feel even more stressed out and worried. In this session, Dr. Catherine shares a mindfulness technique that can enable you to respond to negative thoughts in a different way. Practicing this technique can help you to feel calmer, less overwhelmed by negative thoughts, and more able to cope with stressful situations.
9. Welcome to Simple Stress Management
So many of us are walking around feeling more stressed and anxious. The good news is, there are a number of ways that we can reduce stress in our daily life. In this series, Clinical Psychologist and Author, Dr Catherine Wilkholm, explains simple effective ways in which you can live a healthier and happier life through simple stress management practices. With the right tools, techniques and daily healthy habits you can learn to manage the effects of stress on your physical and mental state.
10. Instant Relaxation Exercise
The first step to overcoming stress and feeling more relaxed is understanding why we become stressed in the first place. In this session, Dr. Catherine will discuss how stress affects the body and mind. She will explain the difference between acute and chronic stress as well the various signs and symptoms of stress. As you become more aware of the experiences, people and circumstances that are causing you to stress you can start to implement stress reducing habits and practices. The session will end with a progressive muscle relaxation exercise which will have you feeling instantly more calm, balanced and relaxed.