Managing stress is important for everyone. When stress is managed, people experience more happiness and good health. However, when you are a woman with ADHD, stress management is even more a priority because stress can cause ADHD symptoms to become worse. For example, being stressed out can make it difficult to screen out competing stimuli, focus and slow down. You can reduce stress with strategies that target your ADHD symptoms. Here are some to try.
Eliminate Stressors - Although you can’t get rid of everything in life that causes you stress but you will be surprised by the amount that you can get rid of. Figure out the people, places and situations that cause you the most stress in your life and then sift out the ones that you can avoid, minimize or get rid of completely and figure out what you need to do to make that happen.
- Try to stay away from people that cause you stress, If you can try to remove them from your life if you can, but if you can’t just try to limit the amount of time you spend with them. Don’t worry about what others may think or if they get offended: if they are causing you stress, they need to go.
- Say No. As a woman with ADHD I hear that all the time, yet I still don’t do it. Don’t over commit yourself when you are already over committed.
- Try to stay away from things that upset you.If there is something on the news that causes you anxiety, don’t watch it or change the channel. Don’t argue over hot button issues. If talking about politics or religion raises your blood pressure, try to change the subject.
- Lighten up your schedule – Don’t over commit your time, and allow yourself extra time in between appointments
Reframe Problems - If you can’t avoid the stressful situation, then change the way that you look at it. When you relook at the problem you will feel some sort of control and you will lower your stress by changing your attitude. The attitude that you take and the expectation that you have set maybe actually what is causing the stress. There are many other things that we cannot change in life but you do have the ability to change the way you react to them.
- Try to view the situation as a learning opportunity
- Look at the bigger picture to get a better perspective and ask yourself if it is really important as you think. If it won’t matter five years from now, just let it go, it is not worth the stress that it is causing you to worry about.
- Learn to let go - If something is beyond your control, it is just a waste of your time and energy to stress out over it. You will just endanger your health and lower the quality of your life over something that you can’t do anything about anyway.
- Accept Responsibility - If your actions or choices played a part to the stress, you need to take responsibility for that. When we take ownership our actions we lower our stress.
Take Action - Woman with ADHD can lower their stress just by taking action in order to do something that the way stress affects us. Sometimes it is a significant action and sometimes it can be just a small step, but the most important thing is that we do something to change the situation.
- Communicate your feelings – Talking to friends or family that have said or done something to upset you can make the stress more manageable. If you keep your feelings bottled up it only causes problems to snowball into bigger mounds of stress that can be difficult to overcome
- Get Support - Talk out your stress with a close friend or family member. Venting with a friend or family member can be very helpful, as not only do we get our stressful feelings off of our chest, but the other person can provide a different view on actions we can take.
- Stand up for yourself -Prepare yourself ahead of time to deal with stressful situations that you know that cause you worry and address the problem as soon as they happen instead of letting them grow. Don’t tolerate criticism and don’t allow other people to manipulate you, demand respect.
- Change the way you do things - Find strategies that can save you time and effort to deal with stress. If you don’t know how to do it differently look for resources to help you.
Recharge your batteries - Take some time for yourself is the most effective way to manage your stress. It may seem frivolous, even selfish to put fun and relaxation at the top of your list, but taking care of yourself actually gives you energy, stamina, and the patience to manage stress more effectively. We get caught up in the craziness of life that we often forget that we are actually the central force that controls our lives. Recharging is not a luxury it is mandatory.
- Make time to relax– Schedule time to relax in your planner. If you need to do to make it a commitment. Take a break from your problems, your obligations and responsibilities just for a little while. They will be there later and you will be able to handle them when you are rested and relaxed
- Spend time with friends and family- Spending time with friends and family who support nurture you can act as a shield against the effectives of negativity. Being around other people who are positive and are upbeat can have a positive effect on your mood.
- Laugh – Being able to laugh at different situations releases endorphins but it also lowers blood pressure. The ability to find humor in life even if you are laughing at yourself is an effective way to manage stress.
- Do activities that nurture you instead of things that drain you. Read a book, go for a walk, listen to music, call a friend or watch a movie that you love.
If you are feeling stressed and your ADHD seems to be worse than usual, now is the perfect time to get help from someone who understands and has personally has helped woman just like you. To learn more about how i can help you manage your adhd learn more at Free Discovery Session