What have you done for yourself lately?
How do you cope with the stress of modern life?
1. Taken a few hours to sit back, put your feet up and dive into that new book you’ve been looking forward to reading?
2. Have you had a massage and been taken away from the stresses of life by feeling completely pampered? Or,
3. Have you had a great night out with friends and come away feeling like you are the luckiest person around because of the great people in your life?
These three are all great methods of decreasing stress, but I have another one for you:
Help someone else!
Together with my friend, Geoff Charlton, we are coming to the end of a week that I will not forget any time soon. We have tested hundreds of eyes and given away boxes of donated glasses to people with no money to buy them and no access to anyone to test their eyes. We have visited over a dozen schools and seen the kids learning in old, ripped UNICEF tents that were supposed to be temporary but are still there two years after cyclone Pam.
I have lots to do when I get home, but my stress levels are perfect. The people of Vanuatu have given me so much more than I could ever give them. They have reinforced the importance of community, gratitude and contribution. They have shown me how looking after others is the ultimate stress release.
Toxic stress makes people selfish, defensive and dumb.
By doing things to help others, you increase your connection to your tribe and develop a feeling of pride in yourself.
Most of all, helping others puts your personal troubles in perspective and helps you develop honest self-awareness. These are the three foundations of Stress Teflon.
Altruism is the giving to others and expecting nothing in return.
I don’t think true altruism exists.
By doing good things to help others, you always get something in return. Your toxic stress levels decrease, your gratitude levels increase and the world is a slightly better place because you are in it. Helping others makes stress non-stick.
Call to action: Help someone TODAY.