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6 Steps To Transform Stress into Success

6 Steps To Transform Stress into Success
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Ever set yourself a passionate goal that was so big it stressed you out, created anxiety, and had you wondering ‘why the hell am I doing this?’

What if you could convert that anxiety into focus, which then led to highly productive results? Once I learned the elements to do this, it was a major component in my success equation.

You must covet success at the deepest level

You must have a passionate desire to obtain your goal. If the fire isn’t in your belly, this isn’t going to work for you. You must be working towards something you really want.

The stress that arises when you’re working towards a passion is the type of energy you can harness to propel you towards your end goal, instead of letting it cripple you.

So ensure you’re on-purpose, fuelled by passion, and committed to the journey.

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Determine your role

Do you see your role in life as absolutely having to obtain your desired goal? For me, this was becoming an entrepreneur. Being a high school drop out, no accounting experience and no lump sum of cash behind me, I had no idea how to make my dream come to fruition, but I had the desire.

I truly felt that it was my purpose so I maneuvered my life to give myself the space to really give it a red-hot go. So much anxiety around that! It involved taking responsibility and investing the family assets into a business opportunity with absolutely no safety net.

You can see now why #1 is so important. You must have the burning desire to achieve your goal because #2 is to give yourself permission to put yourself in the role that is going to make that happen.

Is the thought of that stressing you out already? Believe me, I’ve been there. But you can convert that anxiety by getting on-purpose. It was my role as an entrepreneur to back myself with the family assets. I converted that anxiety into focus by having what I would call a leadership conversation with my family. I did the math. I realized we were stagnant; someone had to take control to ensure we were going somewhere. So I adopted that role.

A couple of years later, I was a self-made millionaire.

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Identify good stress vs. bad stress

When you’re attempting to create your vision you are going to experience stress, but it’s important to learn how to identify the good vs the bad.

The body grows in response to stress. Stress promotes character growth, emotional growth, spiritual growth, and muscle growth. When you’re chasing your dream you’re guaranteed ups and downs, but allow that growth to make you stronger.

The bad kind of stress is when you don’t take control of your life. You are removed from your passion, in your safe zone, and yet things are still going wrong. This stress is debilitating, and makes you weaker and contributes to a ‘poor me’ mindset. No dreams were built feeling sorry for yourself.

If you believe anxiety debilitates, it will be a self-fulfilling prophecy. Confront and change those beliefs and it will go a long way to convert those things into focus.

Surround yourself with success stories

Put yourself into a situation where you can see people already achieving what you’re striving for. Let their energy rub off on you!

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You’re more likely to bungee jump off that bridge if everyone else is successfully doing it and loving it. Start seeing yourself as one of those people; convert that anxiety into enough focus to jump!

I put myself in front of people who were already earning the level of income I envisaged and struck up conversations with them around their success. Pick their brains! See how they’re showing up in life, and emulate that.

Back yourself to win

You’ll come across some people who are going to try and talk you down from your goal. They may be coming from a good place and think they’re helping you, but these discussions can create doubt and stress around the pursuit of your vision.

Don’t let them derail you. Hold your authority as the leader of your life, and respectfully let them know you’ve got this!

Take back your ownership and control and that anxious energy will support you instead of disable you.

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Don’t be paralyzed by illogical fears

I was obeying so many illogical fears it had me in the balance of being afraid most of the time. To some degree, I was inhibited in everything I did, so I started confronting them.

I was scared of heights, so I jumped out of a plane. I was afraid of water, so I went swimming in the ocean every day, until I turned that illogical fear and accompanying anxiety into exhilarated energy and started to enjoy it!

Where there’s stress, there’s growth. As long as you push through and don’t retreat you can convert that energy into focus, which will propel you to where you want to be.

It’s empowering!

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Shane Krider

Entrepreneur

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Last Updated on July 21, 2021

The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder Work)

The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder Work)
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No matter how well you set up your todo list and calendar, you aren’t going to get things done unless you have a reliable way of reminding yourself to actually do them.

Anyone who’s spent an hour writing up the perfect grocery list only to realize at the store that they forgot to bring the list understands the importance of reminders.

Reminders of some sort or another are what turn a collection of paper goods or web services into what David Allen calls a “trusted system.”[1]

A lot of people resist getting better organized. No matter what kind of chaotic mess, their lives are on a day-to-day basis because they know themselves well enough to know that there’s after all that work they’ll probably forget to take their lists with them when it matters most.

Fortunately, there are ways to make sure we remember to check our lists — and to remember to do the things we need to do, whether they’re on a list or not.

In most cases, we need a lot of pushing at first, for example by making a reminder, but eventually we build up enough momentum that doing what needs doing becomes a habit — not an exception.

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From Creating Reminders to Building Habits

A habit is any act we engage in automatically without thinking about it.

For example, when you brush your teeth, you don’t have to think about every single step from start to finish; once you stagger up to the sink, habit takes over (and, really, habit got you to the sink in the first place) and you find yourself putting toothpaste on your toothbrush, putting the toothbrush in your mouth (and never your ear!), spitting, rinsing, and so on without any conscious effort at all.

This is a good thing because if you’re anything like me, you’re not even capable of conscious thought when you’re brushing your teeth.

The good news is you already have a whole set of productivity habits you’ve built up over the course of your life. The bad news is, a lot of them aren’t very good habits.

That quick game Frogger to “loosen you up” before you get working, that always ends up being 6 hours of Frogger –– that’s a habit. And as you know, habits like that can be hard to break — which is one of the reasons why habits are so important in the first place.

Once you’ve replaced an unproductive habit with a more productive one, the new habit will be just as hard to break as the old one was. Getting there, though, can be a chore!

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The old saw about anything you do for 21 days becoming a habit has been pretty much discredited, but there is a kernel of truth there — anything you do long enough becomes an ingrained behavior, a habit. Some people pick up habits quickly, others over a longer time span, but eventually, the behaviors become automatic.

Building productive habits, then, is a matter of repeating a desired behavior over a long enough period of time that you start doing it without thinking.

But how do you remember to do that? And what about the things that don’t need to be habits — the one-off events, like taking your paycheck stubs to your mortgage banker or making a particular phone call?

The trick to reminding yourself often enough for something to become a habit, or just that one time that you need to do something, is to interrupt yourself in some way in a way that triggers the desired behavior.

The Wonderful Thing About Triggers — Reminders

A trigger is anything that you put “in your way” to remind you to do something. The best triggers are related in some way to the behavior you want to produce.

For instance, if you want to remember to take something to work that you wouldn’t normally take, you might place it in front of the door so you have to pick it up to get out of your house.

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But anything that catches your attention and reminds you to do something can be a trigger. An alarm clock or kitchen timer is a perfect example — when the bell rings, you know to wake up or take the quiche out of the oven. (Hopefully you remember which trigger goes with which behavior!)

If you want to instill a habit, the thing to do is to place a trigger in your path to remind you to do whatever it is you’re trying to make into a habit — and keep it there until you realize that you’ve already done the thing it’s supposed to remind you of.

For instance, a post-it saying “count your calories” placed on the refrigerator door (or maybe on your favorite sugary snack itself)  can help you remember that you’re supposed to be cutting back — until one day you realize that you don’t need to be reminded anymore.

These triggers all require a lot of forethought, though — you have to remember that you need to remember something in the first place.

For a lot of tasks, the best reminder is one that’s completely automated — you set it up and then forget about it, trusting the trigger to pop up when you need it.

How to Make a Reminder Works for You

Computers and ubiquity of mobile Internet-connected devices make it possible to set up automatic triggers for just about anything.

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Desktop software like Outlook will pop up reminders on your desktop screen, and most online services go an extra step and send reminders via email or SMS text message — just the thing to keep you on track. Sandy, for example, just does automatic reminders.

Automated reminders can help you build habits — but it can also help you remember things that are too important to be trusted even to habit. Diabetics who need to take their insulin, HIV patients whose medication must be taken at an exact time in a precise order, phone calls that have to be made exactly on time, and other crucial events require triggers even when the habit is already in place.

My advice is to set reminders for just about everything — have them sent to your mobile phone in some way (either through a built-in calendar or an online service that sends updates) so you never have to think about it — and never have to worry about forgetting.

Your weekly review is a good time to enter new reminders for the coming weeks or months. I simply don’t want to think about what I’m supposed to be doing; I want to be reminded so I can think just about actually doing it.

I tend to use my calendar for reminders, mostly, though I do like Sandy quite a bit.

More on Building Habits

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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Reference

[1] Getting Things Done: Trusted System

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