How to Stop Putting Pressure On Yourself

Pressure brings you down — stop it before it eats you up.

Yesterday I got back into bed. I wasn’t feeling well, so listened to my body and stopped pressuring myself to stay up and do work in such a state. However, when I got back into bed, the pressure mounted up, and I felt bad for being in bed — it is a never-ending cycle! How do you stop the pressure? Well here’s how to stop putting pressure on yourself.

Firstly, here’s the poem from my new debut paperback about pressure:

The pressure is everywhere, Like a thief in the night sparking fright, it takes away every last slice of delight. The pressure pushes us to perceive ourselves as failures before even trying; tells us to question if we are doing what everybody “expects” us to do, social norms knock at our needs and tell us we must stick to the societal layout of life, or we end up on the streets. Pressured through a plethora of precarious platforms, pushy people surrounding us every damn day. The pressure is hard to escape, It can push and pull us into shape, Let’s let it show us the light and love instead of going with the push and shove. Pressure comes in many shapes and sizes, permitting it to fracture us in ways that we assume are out of our control when submitting to its strength. The power of pressure affects our emotions, no matter how it takes hold of us. Oh, pressure, how you influence our decisions, perplex prospects and distort or drive our dreams. Dear pressure, please become a friend, not a foe and let me seek out all I know. — Chill Out and Cheer Up: A Ten-Step Guide by Grace Grossmann

Listen to your inner dialogue.

Listening to your inner voice will allow you to become more aware of the pressure you put on yourself. At times, pressure can come in physical pain forms — especially the neck and shoulders (as a yoga teacher, I always focus on these areas to release stress!). Other times, pressure can be emotional pain that brings you down so much that maybe it cripples you to be in bed, but you still feel the pressure mount up — so what do you do?

You listen to your inner voice. Here are some tips on how to as many of us disregard our superpower. According to Dittmar, it’s because:

“One of the reasons why people aren’t hearing their intuition or trusting it or following through on it is because there is no space for it to come in”

Once you’ve made this space, make space to:

Notice the way it makes you feel

Essentially, this is called becoming more in tune and aware of your emotions. Essentially, this is the whole point in meditation and why everyone seems to be obsessed with it right now because we need to understand our emotions more! The minute you notice the way you speak to yourself, the moment the pressure is being tackled. Next thing you can tackle on how and why it makes you feel this way:

Question what you can do

Often, we shush our inner voice, which is where stagnant energy and bad vibes escalate. But remember:

“Follow your heart, listen to your inner voice, stop caring what others think.” ― Roy Bennett

Once you question the pressure, you may question yourself on what to do to feel better. Yes, this might mean getting back into bed like it was for me yesterday as I built up external pressure for myself for no reason and needed rest. It can be that simple. Now, remember to: Feel it and let go

Move on. I think many of us struggle with this. I have had coaching clients in the past who cannot move on from their feelings because they don’t know how to break up with them. Break up with your pressure the way you go through a break-up — mourn, grieve, cry, then laugh!

“The truth is, unless you let go, unless you forgive yourself, unless you forgive the situation, unless you realize that the situation is over, you cannot move forward.” ― Steve Maraboli, Unapologetically You: Reflections on Life and the Human Experience

So there you have it! How to stop putting pressure on yourself means listening to your inner voice, noticing how it makes you feel, questioning what you can do, and letting it go when feeling through it!

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