Hello. In this post I’m explaining the idea of the ‘stress bucket’ which helps me to manage the stress in my life.
How full is your stress bucket?
It can be really helpful to think of your capacity for stress in terms of a bucket that you carry with you through life. All of the stressors you encounter go into your bucket.
They could be really big things like divorce, bereavement, moving house, redundancy. The middling type like worry about a relative, an argument with your partner, running short of money at the end of the month. But they could also be really small things like getting stuck in traffic, spilling coffee down a clean top, the dog running in with muddy paws after you’ve washed the kitchen floor.
Everything gets added to your stress bucket. And it keeps filling up every day, slowly but surely until your stress reaches the brim and starts to overflow and your bucket is so heavy you can hardly carry it. Perhaps then you realise that you’re not sleeping well, you feel anxious and can’t stop worrying, you’re constantly feeling ill and on the brink of tears.
Maybe you can’t understand it because you feel there’s nothing major going on in your life, just normal everyday things. Perhaps you ask yourself ‘What have I got to be stressed about?’ But what’s happened is that that gradually all of those stressors have added up and become too much to cope with – your bucket is full.
We all have different capacities for stress in our lives. Think of this bucket as your capacity. Your bucket may be large or small.
Draw a rough sketch of a bucket and within it write down all the things going on in your life at the moment – big and small. This will help you to understand how the little things really add up and just how much stress you are carrying around with you at the moment.
So what’s the answer?
What’s the first thing you do with a new plant pot for the garden, before you fill it with soil? You knock some drainage holes into the bottom so that when it rains the excess water can flow away easily, the compost doesn’t get waterlogged and the flowers you have planted are able to bloom beautifully.
It’s the same with our stress buckets – we can knock holes into those too, so that our stress just drains away like the water in the plant pot, the bucket never gets too heavy and we are free to enjoy life.
How can we knock holes into our stress buckets? By building relaxation into our daily lives, by taking time just for us, by nurturing ourselves.
Hypnotherapy can help
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