One Way to Overcome Stress

stress1 by Emma Wortt


“If you’re going through hell, keep going.” Winston Churchill.

You have a problem. In order to solve it you’re going to need to make some changes. The thought of that is making you stressed, but the thought of leaving things as they are is even more stressful.

You want to make changes but you know that there are risks involved in doing so. Perhaps you’re thinking there’s someone who won’t approve or someone who may be upset. Maybe you’re wondering where you will find the time to make those much needed changes or you are telling yourself it’s not possible to improve the situation. Whatever you perceive as the risks involved in moving forward is making you anxious, and that is holding you back.

The first step in overcoming your challenge is to work out exactly what outcome you want.

Ask yourself:

In an ideal world how specifically do I want this situation to operate in the future?

The word ‘specifically’ is important here. Decide when you want the situation to have changed and then imagine yourself at that point in the future. Allow yourself to become immersed for a moment in that vision of the resolved issue. Write down now in detail and with clarity what will happen and what you will see, hear and feel when you have resolved this challenge.

The next step is to see this challenge in terms of who you are as a person.

Ask yourself:

Taking into consideration my personal and professional values; my work ethics; my peace of mind; my goals; – am I willing to continue to tolerate this situation as it is now?

Now ask:

What are the risks involved? What specifically am I anxious about? What is stopping me from sorting this out? Make a list.

Now one last question:

Is the outcome I want worth the risks involved in attaining it? If your answer is a resounding ‘Yes!’ then you can now start to work out your action plan to reach the goal.

Stress itself is not the problem. If you want growth and you want change then decide to tolerate the anxiety that will be inherent in it. As long as you continue to balance the risks involved against your desired outcome and who you are as a person your anxiety will begin to dissipate. Then instead of holding yourself back you will empower yourself to move forward.




About the Author


© Emma Wortt of Em-powering Executives, 2008. All Rights Reserved.

Em-powering Executives help leaders and their teams to achieve excellence through executive coaching and training. To receive similar articles direct to your inbox, you can subscribe to the FREE monthly Em-powering Executives newsletter at

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