Do you have a difficult meeting to attend and you are worried about the impact stress will have on your performance?

Does work related stress or relationship based stress leave you feeling out of control and small?

Follow these simple guidelines to enable you to remain focused and in control.

Firstly understand that your body is built to protect you. If it believes you are in danger it will help you. If you view a situation as stressful then it is natural for your body to respond by producing chemicals like adrenalin, sugars and hormones to facilitate a fight or flight response to the stress.

These chemicals will also make your heart beat faster, preparing you to fight or to fly away from the danger.

If you require rational thinking and dialogue you will need to stay aware of what’s going on in your body physically without buying into to it.

These chemicals will not stay in your body for long as your body does not want to run out them! They will be processed out of your system by your liver and kidneys and will move on to the bladder in a matter of minutes.

If you feel your body engaging in a stress response then firstly be pleased that it is responding normally. Say to yourself, “Good, I know there is nothing wrong with this function in my body.”

Next, be aware of outside stimulus but do not give yourself completely to your exterior surroundings. Be equally aware that you can monitor and be mindful of your internal processes. They are fascinating and they are very helpful to you .

They are:

 1, Your breathing

2, Your speech

3, Your physicality

Place your feet squarely on the floor and feel the balls of your feet and your heels on the ground. Keep on feeling them as you listen to, and monitor, your surroundings.

Slow your speech down, this is your timetable. Remember, all you have to do is to listen and respond simply, respectfully and sensibly.

Slow your breathing down and open your mouth a few millimetres to allow good airflow.  Draw the air into your lungs by extending your stomach. This will pull your diaphragm down making your breathing deeper and more useful. In doing this you will be feeding your brain with oxygen, this is a good thing. Your brain is your friend. If you help your brain to help you, it will balance and monitor your outside and internal world perfectly.

As the meeting progresses you can gradually move your awareness of body from your feet, up the backs of your legs, feeling the tension in your muscles. Remember, this is your timetable and you are in control. If you want, you will allow some of the tension in your muscles to flow out of you as you exhale. Your exhalations will be slow and relaxed and will be helped by you pushing out your stomach as you breath in. This will help your diaphragm move air out of your lungs.

Move your awareness of your body up through your trunk, feeling the warmth in your stomach and the air moving in and out of your lungs. Feel the words resonate in the back of your throat and the air moving over your lips.

You have arrived at a very important place! That makes you a very important person!

This is a cause for celebration so lift the corners of your mouth and celebrate!