You're ok. Breathe.
Just when you think you have it in control, life throws you a curve ball.
But just because something unexpected has temporarily knocked you out, it doesn't mean that your life is over.
So, when life throws you a curve ball, how do you deal with the situation by being as calm as possible?
In this post, you’ll learn how to stay calm and relaxed — no matter what situation you find yourself in.
Practice Mindful Breathing
When you’re surrounded by stress and chaos, it’s easy to get overwhelmed. To prevent being swallowed up completely by your thoughts and raging emotions, the first step we recommend you do (in any stressful situation) is to take a deep breath.
Now, we know this sounds simple…but simply bringing your awareness to your breathing, and feeling the air flow through your nose, fill your lungs with air, and exiting out of your body is instantly calming.
Imagine your anger and negativity flowing out with the expelled air as you breathe out. As you bring yourself back to center, realize that you have a choice — to notice and give attention to only that which you choose to notice.
As you breathe, choose to notice that you’re alive. Make a choice to stay present in the moment, and focus on the sights, sounds and touches around you, at that very moment.
By being mindful and focusing on simple sensations, you become aware of your existence — leading you to question the bigger picture — do you want to waste precious time and energy thinking about the temporary situation you’re faced with, or your larger problems — or would you rather consciously focus on the blessings, opportunities, and positive things in your life?
Simply inhaling and exhaling, gives you time to gain perspective, and gives your mind a few moments to rest. Remember, no matter what the situation — mindful breathing is a great way to build resilience to anger, stress and anxiety.
To provide more structure to this practice, follow this short guided meditation, by UCLA’s Mindful Awareness Research Center (MARC).
Focus on the Positive
It can be hard to imagine what could possibly be positive about getting a flat tire on the way to an important job interview?
But, every situation or challenge in life has within it a seed of benefit — you only need to nourish it, and let it bloom.
When you’re in the middle of a very challenging situation, this is easier said than done. Still, we encourage you to stay calm, and try to look for the good in any situation.
Because it allows you to stay open to opportunities that present themselves to you, especially when you might least expect them to.
Ask yourself, “What possible good could come out of this situation?”
Then without judgement, stay open-minded and let the answers come to you, and better still, write them down. Let the infinite abundance in the world support you in your journey with something better than you could have ever imagined.
Be Intelligent Not Instant
Do you strike back and respond immediately to anything that annoys you? Perhaps it’s a work email or a power struggle with your teenager. Whatever it is, are you always ready to blast out a reply?
In any situation, remember to take your time. React slowly.
It’s okay to let others wait — and come back with a well-thought-out intelligent response than an instant one. The key is to stay focused on being calm and in control.
Once you lose your temper, or react on the basis of your ego, you lose control. And, once you lose control you are no longer in charge of yourself. You grow rash and impulsive. Your vision shrinks.
So, don’t become prey for others to push your buttons. Be intelligent in your reactions, not instant.
BONUS Tip – Decompress!
We’ve often found that stepping back from a stressful situation, whether at home or at work, allows us to see things more clearly. This could just be something simple to take your mind off the situation at hand — such as going for a walk, watching a movie, taking a hot bath, or cuddling up with a good book.
Once you’ve had time to rejuvenate and refresh your mind, you’ll be a lot more effective at problem solving and tackling that curve ball you were dealt with.
Lastly, always remember that YOU have the power to choose to stay calm, and present, no matter what is going on around you. You have the choice to choose happiness and create harmony with your circumstances — and believe that the universe is working for you, not against you.