I’m sure you’ve all been hearing the news lately. The talk of rising gas and food prices is making even those in stable financial situations feel jittery. Many of the clients I’ve worked with are struggling to make ends meet and worried about what is going to happen if their business doesn’t pick up. “What if” is a common thought for many people these days.
Since I am the Queen of “What if,” I’ve had to develop some effective coping techniques. After all, getting my sympathetic nervous system over-aroused which floods my body with stress hormones doesn’t lead to very effective problem solving! Here are a few tips to help you if you are feeling the strain:
1. Ask yourself if your worrisome thought is true: I love the method that Byron Katie recommends in her books. She says to ask yourself the following questions:
Is it true?
Can I absolutely know that it’s true?
How do I react when I think this thought?
Who or what would I be without the thought?
Then, turn the thought around, and find three genuine examples of how each turnaround is as true as or truer than the original statement.
This process can help you get a clearer picture of your true situation, so that you aren’t reacting to “what ifs” but are dealing with what is actually happening in the moment.
2. Be practical: Are you truly short on cash? Then come up with a two part plan to get yourself in a better situation.
Part One: Reduce your expenses by taking a hard look at exactly where your money is going and then deciding what is essential and what you can live without for right now. Some areas where you might be able to cut back are: cable TV, eating out, beauty salon, cell phone extras (internet, texting), entertainment expenses, or groceries. If you look carefully, you’ll probably be able to find one or two areas where you can “trim the fat.”
Part Two: Increase your income. Look around for a part-time job or if you are self-employed explore options for offering your services at more affordable prices by creating products or group options. Your clients are also feeling the strain of rising costs, so find a way to offer them your valuable service at a less expensive rate, while still meeting your own financial obligations.
3. Count your blessings: Keep a running log of all the things that you do have. Don’t forget to include your health. Remember, keeping self-care on the top of your list is essential for dealing with challenging times. After all, when you don’t feel well, you really aren’t able to handle problems effectively. If you need some help with this, check out my 4 Week to a Self-Care Lifestyle Workbook now available at my websites (Cost: $14.50): http://www.empoweringlightworkers.com/Coaching_Products.html
4. Manage Stress: When you find yourself obsessing over your worries, use the SOS for Stress Meditation to help yourself return to a state of peace. By turning your attention back to your body, you will calm your thoughts so that you can deal with things more effectively. The simplified version of this meditation is four steps: STOP whatever you are doing or thinking about, BREATHE in for a count of 4, hold for a count of 4, out for a count of 6 through the mouth, and hold for 4, RELAX your muscles beginning at your feet and moving up to the top of your head, and LET GO with each exhale all of your fears while imagining your guardian angels clearing your whole system of stress. To purchase the download audio version (MP3) of this meditation along with two reference guides for this technique, visit this link: http://www.empoweringlightworkers.com/Coaching_Products.html
5. Have Faith: Have faith, not only in a higher power, but also in yourself. You have the tools you need to take care of yourself. You will be your own best friend and make sure your needs are met. You can do it! I find the following affirmation helpful with this: “I have absolute faith in myself and I have absolute faith in God. I am safe and all is well.”
Hang in there! Things will get better (and are probably much better than you think!). If you need some one on one coaching help, send me an email or call for a free consultation to learn more about how my coaching services can support you: Nancy@crossroadscoachingonline.com or (330) 416-6184 or join me for this month’s group coaching call on 5/21/2008 (no technological expertise necessary…you just need a phone!). The cost is $15 or free for members of the Empowering Lightworkers e-club. To register, send me an email.
Have a great day!