It may sound hard to believe, but experts say that your personality can actually cause you stress. To a certain extent, your personality might have been determined at birth. However, there are certain characteristics that you might have developed over the years that are now contributing to your stress level. While one cannot change his or her personality overnight, it is certainly possible to change certain habits that may now be causing you stress.
To begin with, you should ask yourself if you have low self-esteem. Do you feel as if you are inferior to other people? Do you constantly berate yourself for your faults? Do you consider yourself to be the sum total of your mistakes? There is evidence to suggest that low self-esteem can lead to stressful situations. The problem is that you may be putting stress on yourself unnecessarily.
Therefore, what you need to do is to begin to enhance your self-esteem.
This begins by ending the “negative talk” that goes on inside your head. Instead of focusing on your weaknesses, form a list of your strengths. You might also want to list all of your major accomplishments. You might be amazed to discover just how much you have achieved. Whenever you feel the urge to downgrade yourself, think of your attributes. This should serve to end the litany of your failures which you may be repeating to yourself.
Stress can also be the result of being overburdened. Do you take on too much? Are you dealing with too much responsibility? While there are certain responsibilities at home, at work, and at school that we must carry, at times we may be overextending ourselves. List your major responsibilities and see if there is a way for you to whittle down the list. You might be surprised to learn just how much you have taken on. With a little bit of planning, you might be able to shift some of your responsibilities to other members of your household or to your co-workers. Be sure to talk with your partner and your boss if your stress level seems out of control. Together, you can work on strategies to reduce the amount of stress you feel.
Let’s face it. Some of us are control freaks. We feel as if we need to control every detail within our line of sight. If you fall into this category, you may be experiencing stress because of your controlling nature. You may also find that this weakness is negatively impacting your personal life, causing you to feel additional stress in your relationships. In order to combat this tendency, try practicing the old adage, “Let Go and let God (or your Higher Power). Recognise that there are certain things that are simply beyond your control. The sooner you recognize this, the better off you’ll be, and the less stress you will feel.
Another prime cause of stress is fear, especially fear of the unknown. You may be fearful of making mistakes or of being judged harshly. In order to counteract this, you must recognize that everyone makes mistakes. You must also learn to forgive yourself for your faults—otherwise, you will be putting yourself under a tremendous amount of stress. Follow the motto: Do your best and let nature take care of the rest. Try not to agonise over every little thing. In addition, learn to get over the guilt of not being perfect. Otherwise, your stress level is likely to consistently hit the roof.
You have to realise that recognising your faults is half the battle. Once you know what personal foibles you need to work on, you’ll be in a better position to reduce your stress. Realise that it took you a long time to develop personality flaws, so it might take some time to eliminate them. In other words, don’t expect to radically change your personality in a week. However, with the proper amount of diligence, you can alter those aspects of your personality that are causing you grief. Once you eliminate these flaws, you should feel more energetic, less stressed, and better able to take on the world. And you may just find your blood pressure decreasing as well!