Stress is an imposed force.
Strain is the deformation that does the damage.
Controlling the effects of stress is about three things:

  1. reducing the causes
  2. reducing the deformation
    and, perhaps most important…
  3. reducing the damage that the deformation does

Think of a supple young tree.� It can bend and move in the strongest winds, without damage.� It is resilient.

Strain

Building Resilience

In a workplace with more pressures to perform, shared among fewer staff, stress can only increase.� One strategy to deal with this is to build your personal resilience, and a powerful technique is to learn simple five-minute workplace meditation.

This is the simplest of routines that requires no training � just five minutes of your time and a little practice.� It will get easier the more you do it.� It is not designed to take you into a deep meditation, but simply to relax and calm you quickly; just enough to be more resourceful in the face of a demanding day.

Step 1: Choose an Action Word

Before you even start practicing your five-minute meditation, it helps to choose an anchor word that you can use when practicing.� Once you have used it often enough, just thinking of the word can trigger a start to relaxation. Good words to choose include: calm, warm, relax, soft, breathe, �

Step 2: Are you Sitting Comfortably

Find somewhere to sit comfortably for five minutes.� Sit upright, with your hands resting lightly in your lap, or on your thighs.� Softly close your eyes (if you wish.� This will help, but it is not essential.)

Step 3: Relax

Start with your face, then your neck, then your shoulders.� Notice any tension, then gently relax the muscles.� Mentally repeat your anchor word as you do this.� Continue down your body to your chest, arms, tummy, thighs, legs, ankles and toes.

Step 4: Melt

Fell your muscles like warm butter, gently softening and melting.� Imagine your feet warming, melting and spreading out.� As you notice each part of your body melting, mentally repeat your anchor word.� Work your way up your body from your feet to your knees, your hips, tummy, chest, shoulders, neck and head.� If you notice a lot of tension: let it go.

Step 5: Breathe

Then open your eyes.� Yawn.� Take three deep breaths.� Blink a few times.� Then slowly get up and move around.� Notice how much sharper your senses seem.

That�s it.� Done.

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