How to Handle Stress

Ugh. What a week!

I got sick. I broke my toe. My pup got sick. My pup got sicker. My pup needed emergency surgery. The world stopped.

In spite of a million swirling projects and piling workload. It just stopped. Mac came first. Thankfully he is going to be fine, he’s recovering well and hopefully will be home by his first birthday tomorrow (sans cake).

I was hanging out with him pre-surgery and I just started bawling. I was worried about him undergoing surgery, sad that he was so miserable, but it was so much more than that. It was stress about money (vet bills add up fast and I don’t have insurance), it was feeling awful myself, it was the million other work things that have to get done because I’m the only one that can actually do them.

It was a lot.

So I cried.

For about an hour.

And I am not a crier. I can hold it together for pretty much anything other than a This is Us episode.

You know what though? It worked. It released the anxiety that had built up and was spilling over.

So often we bottle everything in. We think we have to be stoic and strong. We think that giving in to our emotions is weak.

But that sadness/anger/frustration needs to be felt to move through it. If you don’t let it out, it remains a toxic vessel within your body. And I have seen what holding it in can do to someone physically. It’s dangerous.

Not a crier? Here are some other things you can do to release that trapped energy:

  • Write it out. Pen to paper (its far more effective than fingers to keys). Write out everything you’re feeling free form. Just let it pour onto the page. It doesn’t even need to make sense. Keep going until you feel like its time to stop.
  • Talk it out. Find a friend to vent to. If you don’t have friends that will listen, find a therapist or coach. Just talking through all of your stress and anxiety will make a huge impact.
  • Hug it out. Surround yourself with people who love you. I’m not going to lie, I wanted my mom. She’s in South Carolina at the moment, so I settled for phone calls. But man, I needed to hear it would all be ok from her.

Today? Today I feel great. Im moving forward. I feel positive. I can’t wait to hug my furbaby and get back to work.

Sending you so much love.

ps – Speaking of tools – my Unlock Love course is chock full of them. Check out more info on it below.

Unlock Love – How to Get Over Your Ex

We’ve all had a terrible breakup – or several. Those endings that feel like the end of the world. Where you can’t imagine ever NOT being in pain. Yet, anyone who has ever suffered a breakup knows that it does get better with time. So other than finding a time machine to speed that up, how can you feel better…sooner.

Here are the ways I urge my clients to move on after an ending:

Disconnect – No texts, no calls, no coffees to talk about what went wrong, no social media. Disconnect on ALL levels. A wound will never heal if you keep touching it. Having a hard time not texting them after a glass of wine? Find a sponsor. Have a friend that you can call or text when you are feeling weak. Do everything in your power to cut off contact. If you do nothing else, do this.

Release – Let go of any anger, sadness or frustration associated with the relationship or its ending. A simple tool I have many clients use is release writing. Just let it flow from your heart to the paper – “I release the pain I feel around xyz. I release my anger.” etc. And then burn it. Carefully, and preferably outside.

Rebound – This has not always been part of the prescription, especially as a relationship expert. BUT studies have shown that rebounds can be good for your confidence after a breakup. You don’t necessarily need to jump into a relationship, but getting back out there and dating can do wonders for your well being. Let your friend set you up. Go out and flirt! It’s all about shifting the sadness.

Three things. Three doable actions. And I promise you, it will get better.


Unlock Love – How to Stay Positive

I am a pretty positive person. Even when things are difficult and times are hard, I still try to look on the bright side of things. I look for the lessons, and the meaning of the hardship, instead of dwelling on the pain, anger or frustration.

But that wasn’t always the case. There was a time 10 years ago when I would find myself succumbing to my negative thoughts. I would find myself getting stuck in a tornado of negativity, and I would self medicate – with exercise, or something quite less healthy, wine (though, I do love a nice malbec!).

So how did I make the switch? What changed?

This is how I became a more positive person, and as a relationship expert, I have found that positivity is one of the most important traits someone can have to attract a relationship, and to keep the one they are in healthy.

1. Step out the Tornado – You KNOW when your life feels negative, chaotic and toxic. I know I did! So I stepped out of the tornado. Half the battle in remaining positive is surrounding yourself with positive people and living a positive life. Take a minute to assess your relationships, work life, and home life. Are there changes that need to be made? Boundaries that need to be set?

2. Become Aware – Self awareness is an amazing tool for positivity. Start to note when you are thinking negative thoughts, and fill your brain with their alter egos instead. I have my clients create a negativity journal where they begin to track their negative thoughts, and find a way to spin them positively – ie. “I am such a failure” becomes “I am growing and learning”. Write them down, and reframe them.

3. Find the Lessons – EVERY negative experience has something to teach us. Nothing is put in front of us unintentionally. Bad relationship? So, what did you learn? Failed business? Tell me, where was your growth? Learning to look at things from the perspective of growth and evolution as opposed to failure is key.

It is a practice, not a light switch, but with time your light will shine brighter than your dark.


Unlock Love – How to Protect Your Heart

Huh, well that’s a funny title for a post by a relationship expert hell bent on opening every heart she sees!

Yet, what about when your heart really does need a little bit of armor? Or maybe just a rest? Like this week, when it feels as if they world is at its darkest hour.

You see, it isn’t just hyper personal events that affect us, but world events can break our hearts as well. Between the mass shooting in Las Vegas, multiple catastrophic hurricanes, and earthquakes, I felt as if I needed about three years in a dark cave to recover from the actual physiological pain I was feeling.

So what do you do when you can’t quite accommodate a three year long sabbatical? You protect your heart. Here are the three steps I practice:

– Detox – No, not a juice fast, a negativity detox. Step away from social media for a bit, get away from the 24 hour news cycle, and avoid people in your life that catastrophize events. This isn’t putting your head in the sand in ignorance, this is self preservation. When you feel that you’ve reached your max (or preferably sooner), it’s time to detox. Even a temporary time of peace (24 hours?) can be enough to reset your system.

– Connect – Wait, didn’t I just tell you to disconnect?! Yes! However, while disconnected from negative sources, make the effort to connect with those that fill your soul. I have three friends on speed dial that lift me up in any situation (in fact i *just* got off the phone with one). Surround yourself with the nurturers in your life, and be willing to receive. Let your cup refill.

– Live with Intention – Anyone that knows me, or has worked with me knows I am passionate about living life intentionally. In times where you feel your heart hurting or your stress level rising, it is especially important to set intentions. How do you want to feel? How do you want to react? Recite mantras, write out your intentions upon waking, and catch yourself when you step back into the tornado. Mantras could include: I am protected, I am ok, I am loved, or my heart is full.

– Rest – It’s so basic, that it almost doesn’t warrant mentioning, yet I personally know so many that respond to stress with more stressors on their body (raising my hand here!). When your mind and heart move into overdrive, it becomes even more imperative to get those 7-9 hours of sleep, and avoid pushing your nervous system to the brink. Go to sleep early, steal moments throughout your day, and don’t forget the importance of your breath.

Remember, everything is temporary. Nothing is permanent. And you have way more power than you realize in living a life that feels peaceful and positive.

Sending you so much love!
Rachel


Do you trust me?

Trust.

It’s such a fragile state. Once it’s broken, it is extremely difficult to repair.

We so often talk about the trust of another, but what about the trust of ourselves? What happens when we lose our own trust?

I have a client that second (and triple) guesses every decision she makes. You know why? One time she made the “wrong” decision. One that caused her pain and frustration. It took her two years to shake the sadness. As a result, she no longer trusts herself to act in her own best interest. Sure, that one decision may have led down a tough road, but what about her current state? How much stress and frustration is she causing herself?

There is no decision you cannot make on your own when you trust yourself.

The person to date. The house to buy. The job to take. The jump to make.

So how do you regain the trust of self? I would argue in the same way you would regain it of anyone whom you no longer trust…

▪ Keep promises – If you commit to doing something, do it. No excuses. Even something as simple as “I will take a walk today” is a promise that must be kept. Perhaps it is more weighty – “I will set boundaries”. Either way, the importance is in the execution.
▪ Be nice – to yourself. We tend to trust kind people. Why? Because we don’t think they will hurt us. It works internally to. Eliminate that negative self talk and internal punisher. Be kind. To you.
▪ Believe in now. There are no mistakes. You never made a “bad” choice. You made choices. You learned lessons. All that there is now is room to grow. Bring yourself into the now. Stay present. Live from today, not yesterday.

Forget trusting me, trust yourself.

1 2 3 13

www.racheldealto.com