Stress is like quicksand. Now, the only reference I have to quicksand is that in movies I’ve seen but I love analogies and I’ve just thought of this one.

Now, the only reference I have to quicksand is that in movies I’ve seen but I love analogies and I’ve just thought of this one.

In the movies, the person stuck in the quicksand would be scared and physically struggling to break free because they are sinking and can foresee they would soon be submerged and unable to breathe.

Not the best situation to be in.

What’s the best thing to do when you find yourself in quicksand?

That’s right:

Stop, breathe, relax

You will then naturally float to the surface or at the very least, stop sinking.

Though it seems counter-intuitive, doesn’t it, to relax while you are being slowly consumed by sand and water. However, as with most situations in life that create stress, if we bring ourselves back to the basics, calm ourselves down, breathe and go with the flow, we will find that our environment works with us to bring us out on top!

However, when life gets hard, if we bring ourselves back to the basics, calm ourselves down, breathe and go with the flow, we will find that our environment works with us to bring us out on top!

Next time you find yourself in a stressful situation, whether you’re in a nerve-wracking meeting or when your child vomits or throws a tantrum, Stop, breathe, relax.

As I’m sure you’re aware, my background is in Early Education and when the children I worked with would “throw a tantrum” other teachers would on occasion, not feel comfortable dealing with the child in that situation. I on the other hand, found these children and situations was where I was highly effective!

I would love that one-on-one time that would happen after they had their ‘moment’ (tantrum) and released that pent-up energy. I would converse with them, the same way I would converse with an adult (only no swear words!) and I would breathe, wait for them to have their say, or to pick themselves off the floor when they weren’t getting the reaction they usually did.

We would then have a beautiful, heartfelt conversation.

The insights I would gain from those discussions were astounding.

However, had I have simply reacted in that moment been sucked into the stress of the situation, and told them off because they were acting “inappropriately” instead of breathing and holding space for them, I would have missed a beautiful opportunity to connect with another human being and to understand their perspective and their world.

So, the next time you feel stressed, pay attention to your body. Whether you feel your fists clench, or if your shoulders tighten, please, remember to Stop, breathe, relax.

The more you do this, the easier it becomes to do it. Just like any habit 🙂