Hi Team,

Well it's official, the construction industry will all be back to work next Tuesday; although the daily case numbers seem to paint a different story (shut down at 500 cases and opening up at 1100 cases??). Thank God for vaccinations!

My last 4 Weekly Email topics (sleep, exercise, healthy eating & digestion) are all very important for maintaining good mental health and for managing the stress in our lives. I have written about stress in several previous emails (see summary below), and it is a natural and necessary part of all our daily lives. Stress can even be a good thing and how much it impacts us mentally and physically comes down to how we manage it.

"Worry is a misuse of the imagination" unknown

In email # 79, I explored the notion that a crisis or time of hardship (such as the current pandemic) is very stressful for everyone involved, but throughout history humans have thrived during a crisis and have always come out the better for it. Humans have evolved to be experts at survival and these adaptations over time have occurred because of coping with stress and hardship.

In email # 81, I explained the difference between stress and anxiety (i.e., anxiety mainly comes from our need to control whatever is causing our stress). How we manage stress is a learnt behaviour and is largely under an individual's control. 
Being able to successfully manage the stress in our lives comes down to developing a positive attitude to stress and responding and behaving accordingly.

In email # 81, I outlined three ways to help relieve and manage stress.
1 - Recognize and acknowledge when you are feeling stressed.
2 - Feel okay about the stress (it will pass).
3 - Use the energy + motivation that comes from stress (lean in or walk towards the stress, don't try to run away).

"We need to handle every stressful situation like a dog.
If you can't eat it of play with it, just pee on it and walk away." unknown

For me a big part of managing stress during this pandemic has been "having stuff to do". As long as I feel I am doing something positive or productive, all the stressful stuff seems to dissipate and stay in the background. I am a huge advocate for the "To-do list", so every day I write down a list of tasks I need to complete and as I go through the day, I tick off each item once done, and this gives me a sense of purpose and accomplishment. If I don't finish all the items, I try not to worry or judge and simply move it to tomorrow's to-do list.

"Remember; a year from now, everything you are stressing about won't even matter." Mark Manson

Thanks for reading,
Stay safe and don't sweat the small stuff.

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