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Reduce Stress at Home: 4 Step Action Plan

By: Lisa Koning - Updated: 15 Oct 2012 | comments*Discuss
Home Stress Reduce Stress Stressful

Home should be a place of relaxation and calm though often it can become a source of stress. With many other stresses in modern life it’s important to address those issues that can cause stress at home. What can you do to reduce stress at home?

Understand The Causes

Before you can address the items that could be causing stress at home it’s necessary to spend some time considering what might be the causes. It’s likely that there are numerous causes and that the combination is creating a stressful environment.

Action 1 - List the top 5 items that you feel are causing you stress at home.

Are You the Only One that is Stressed?

It’s possible that other members of your household share your concern at the level of stress. However it’s also possible that you are stressed because you’re enabling others to have an easy time of things.

Action 2 - Find out how others in your home feel about stress levels.

Make Some Changes

Now that you’ve identified what you feel are the causes, and you've had discussions with others in your home, it’s time to make some changes. If others agree that stress levels are too high then you all need to decide, collectively, what the causes might be. Have a friendly discussion. Keep it light hearted and try to avoid any accusations or finger pointing. Allow others to express where they think the cause of stress might be.

If others don’t agree that stress is a problem at home then it’s likely that you are the one suffering. Just because others don’t agree doesn’t mean there is no need for change. On the contrary, if you are stressed then it’s important to address the situation.

Action 3 - On your own, or as a group, list the top 5 items that are causing stress. Come up with alternative ways of dealing with each item. Is it necessary for you to do whatever it is that is causing you stress? Could someone else do it? What if it didn’t get done?

Come Up With A Plan

Changes are great but they have to be put into action. Come up with a list of activities and assign people to them, put it down into a chart and put it up on the wall for all to see. Make it clear that people are responsible for the items against their name. And importantly, don’t do items that are not against your name.

Action 4 - Draw up your Action list and put it in a prominent place. Make a promise to yourself that you at least will stick to it.

Dealing with Stressful behaviour

It’s possible that someone else’s behaviour is causing you stress. If this is the case it may be you have to consider how you can change when they behave in the manner that causes you stress. Perhaps it is not engaging in unhelpful and argumentative exchanges. Perhaps it’s walking away from situations where people are not prepared to engage in a constructive manner. Try to discuss the situation at a time when people are calm and receptive. If you are unable to resolve the situation you may need to seek help and advice from your doctor or a support group.

Stress at home can lead to health problems and you may find it difficult to deal with issues in other areas of your life. It’s important to talk about the causes of the stress and to try and engage others in the problem. Recognising the issue is an important step. Don’t ignore it if others don’t share the same concern. If it’s a problem for you then it needs addressing.

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