The ‘S’word: Life Coach Biji Tushar talks to us about dealing with ‘Stress’ and all that comes with it

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It is very easy to find ourselves struggling in our search for a purpose in life, and the concept of ‘living life to the fullest’ can take a backseat. We’re caught up with stress, procrastination, a tussle between work and personal life, and that can sometimes be consuming.

Biji Tushar has been a teacher and principal for 25 years now. In addition, she is also a Fingerprint Analyst, Psychometrician, and a Certified Life coach. Her expert opinions on stress management, and motivational and inspiring speeches have influenced many to lead more fulfilling lives. We caught up with Tushar and asked her to share her tips on dealing with stress, and work-life balance. Here’s what she had to say –

Tips to avoid procrastinating before an important exam, or meeting an important deadline

Procrastination means delaying things. Most commonly the reason is to avoid the work as it may seem a great task causing reasonable anxiety. So the following tips will help.

  1. FOCUS ON THE POSITIVE OUTCOME OF COMPLETING THE TASK

When you shift the focus from the task to the outcome, it gives you the impetus to proceed. For example – when you focus on how you will feel after you have completed your revision or completed the assignment at work a day before the deadline, it will motivate you to take action.

  1. LET GO OF PERFECTIONISM

Take small steps at regular intervals will reduce the stress of completing the task rather than waiting for the last moment. Fill your mind with these thoughts. Decide to do the best in the given time, but don’t be obsessed with perfection. For example -If you have to get a business deal of Rs.3 lakh by the end of the month, be happy even if you achieved Rs.2.5 Lakh or even say Rs.3.5 Lakh.

  1. SET IRRESISTIBLE REWARDS FOR TASKS DONE

Rewards always motivate people. However, you need to make sure that the rewards are irresistible. For example -If you have to get a business deal of Rs.3 lakh by the end of the month, note down 3 irresistible rewards for your task. Like going for movie after you have achieved Rs.1Lakh and so on.

How to deal better with a stressful situation?

Understanding the meaning of Stress, there are 2 responses we generally take- ‘Fight’ or ‘Flight’. However what should be the right attitude to stress? I would say -It is an opportunity to test our resilience.

  1. Don’t ask why

Focus on the solutions not the problem. When you feel like a victim you are blinded, and cannot see clearly. Hence, stay calm – the easiest thing is to take a deep breath, hold and release for a couple of times. Then check out your options and choose the most positive one.

If we continue to be negative the cells in our body store the negative energy and we become diseased. However if we change our state and focus on the positives, we make ourselves more adaptive and train ourselves to be solution seekers and not victims, in fact we become Victors.

Students can take the examinations as an opportunity to enhance their skills and become more knowledgeable. If they look at examinations as an opportunity to prove their mettle, then it will no longer be a stressor.

  1. Stop the blame game

This is the second reaction to stress. We either blame ourselves or others. These are self-defeating thoughts which help none. So allow yourself to go through what you are feeling, release the pain and then take charge. You will understand that it’s a waste of time to continue the blame game.

When we take charge we are committing to ourselves, to bring about a positive change. Even if we don’t have a solution, we can begin to see a ray of hope. In every situation, we have a choice to act in a particular way. A simple way to handle stress is to ACCEPT IT.

Once you accept it, allow your brain to take over. The greatest mistake we do is to allow our heart to take over. This will be even stressful as overwhelming emotions don’t allow us to see clearly. Which is why, handling stress involves looking at the situation objectively, and taking positive action.

 Tips to balance studies / professional life and personal matters

 In our obsession for Perfection, we lose out on the simple joys of life. There’s nobody on earth living a ‘perfect’ life, they simply find a way to achieve that. In order to do so, there are a few tips that will help.

  1. Allot proper time for studies and personal matters, depending on the situational demand.
  2. Make a To Do list. It saves time and helps you to ensure you have taken care of everything and nothing is left out.
  3. Check how much you have achieved and resolve to be more efficient. Checking how much you accomplished will help assess your work objectively.
  4. The key to success is when you realize that you cannot make all people happy all the time. But you can make some people happy sometimes. So maintain your happiness first.
  5. Be self-disciplined. Ensure that you do not bring your work home. Also, ensure that you do not share your home affairs at your workplace apart from trusted friends.
  6. Be 100% present in what you do. This means that you need to focus completely on your work when at work and focus on personal issues when at home. This is a slightly difficult task. But ‘Trifles make Perfection, though perfection is not a trifle’.

Some effective methods of focusing on studies/work whilst going through troubled times

Often we face situations which are not conducive to our goals. It may happen that we have an important assignment at work and at the same time there is a calamity at home. Well, what we can do is to first, Prioritize the need.

Obviously, it will seem that you need to take care of the calamity. However, you need to check if you are the one who should take care of that. For example, if you are a child who has got an exam and there is a sudden financial burden, there’s no way you can help it. So trust your parents to take charge of the situation, and concentrate on the exams. This would need a good deal of determination. However, if you think of it practically, the only thing that you can do pray for them and reduce their burden by doing well in your exams. The ability to disconnect from the emotions and look at things objectively is an art to be cultivated. As much as an art it is also a skill to shift your emotions. We need to learn how to process our emotions. Dissect them. Keep what serves us and leave those that harm us. This will come when we are self –aware.

In case you are an adult, then you need to set the home-front first as the family comes first. However, you may ask for an extension of the deadline of the assignment by explaining the situation to your boss. Believe people are good. I’m sure everyone understands a genuine situation. You need to trust people.

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