You can do it. You can do anything. But if you try to do it all, you are guaranteed stress. While there are several stress management ideas listed below, getting help just made the top of my list. Why? So I can do what only I can do and not stress about it. For example, my in-laws just arrived for a few days visit. That means cleaning the house (a lot deeper than normal), finding places to store 1/2 finished projects, planning activities, and so on. In addition, I was on a deadline to get my 1st book to my editor. (YES! I am writing a devotional book on what the Bible says about health. I'll keep you posted.) Between clients, classes, and the book, I did not have time to deep clean the house. (I usually enjoy cleaning, but not if I am pressed for time.) Only I could train my clients, write, and edit. But I could hire a friend to help deep clean the house. I did and she did a better job than I ever could have. If you are stressed, I encourage you to get help. List what only you can do. Then find others who can help with everything else.
Here are a few more ideas:
1. Get God’s perspective. Much (most?) of our stress relates to what we think about a situation more than the situation itself. (For example, the things in the house that didn't get done before my in-laws arrived? In the course of eternity, it won't matter.)
2. Chill out. Meditate on 1 Peter 5:7. Tell yourself, “God’s got this!” You do what you can do in the natural and believe God to do what only He can do. Refuse to worry.
3. Say, “No.” Some sources of stress are self-inflicted. If we have committed our time to something God hasn’t instructed us to do, we end up with more promises and projects than we have hours in the day. That feels stressful just thinking about it. Proverbs 31:16a says, “She considers a [new] field before she buys or accepts it [expanding prudently and not courting neglect of her present duties by assuming other duties].” (Amplified)
4. Set boundaries. It is pretty stressful when you let your boundaries get crossed! Read Cloud and Townsend's book on Boundaries. http://www.cloudtownsend.com/boundaries/
5. Take care of yourself through exercise, quiet time alone (Mark 1:35), pleasure (Psalm 16:11) and nutrition. These are all easy to neglect if we are too busy doing things God hasn’t called us to do.
6. Receive God’s forgiveness, forgive others and forgive yourself. I don’t know of anything more stressful than holding on to bitterness, guilt and shame.
Have a blessed and stress-free weekend, everyone!