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Samantha Dhu, qualified Counsellor and Psychotherapist, shares knowledge and tips to help you live a happier life in her blog. If you’re looking for compassionate, knowledgeable therapy in Perth or online, come and meet Sam. 

Stressed??! 3 Helpful Steps you can take to gain perspective (Using the Helicopter View)

At different times in life we will all struggle with stress. It’s a pretty normal experience in life. A certain amount of stress can even be helpful but when our stress levels get too high or we experience stress over a prolonged period of time we can become vulnerable to burn out and are certainly going to have difficulty thinking clearly.

The problem is when we are stressed we often loose perspective. and our unhelpful perspective triggers our emotions becoming a VISCOUS cycle.

One of the simplest ways to explain stress, is that stress happens when our demands outweigh our resources. So the more demanding life is the more resources you need.

BUT what most of us do is go oh I’m too busy to go to yoga this week or I don’t have time to slow down and meet a friend for a cuppa or have a quick stretch we just keep adding the demands whilst dropping the resources. This becomes a viscous cycle and we often struggle to think clearly the more stressed we become.

I am going to talk about the THREE steps that will help you gain a whole lot of perspective when you are feeling really stressed.

Step One | Slow Down

Slow down, Take a breath, take a big step back. Imagine you are in a helicopter and you're looking at the situation from high above.

When we look at something really, really close we’re often so closely involved and caught up in it THE SITUATION THAT we can’t see it clearly.

if we step back and look at it from far away we have more space and perspective on it.

Step Two | rEFLECT

Think about what you’re reacting to. Think about the meaning you’re making of the situation and what you might be telling yourself.

“What am I reacting to and what meaning am I making of this event?” Think about what an outsider would say?

What advice would you give a friend in this situation?

Again, sometimes when we’re very close and emotionally caught up in a situation, we lose perspective. But if a friend was going through that situation we may be able to give some helpful advice.

Step Three | cHOOSE

Once you’ve reflected on your perspective, you can ask yourself what’s going to be the most helpful way to look at the situation.

We always have a choice and this is an incredibly empowering concept but often we are so busy living on auto pilot and we are stuck in old patterns so we don’t even realise that we have choices.

Choose to exercise and choose to get enough sleep because they are the basics human needs if we don’t have those needs met we can’t work on creating our dream life.

Recognising that we have a choice-that it’s OK to say NO, that it’s OK to set boundaries around our time, to ask for help.

Although you may have a lot of unhelpful thoughts going on in this situation about the stressful event, you can actually choose to act on a more helpful thought.

Here is a Facebook live I did last year wHERE i talk about the helicopter view strategy and a personal example I talked about where I felt stressed and applied the helicopter view.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QdCWP_UYffY


If you are feeling stressed or overwhelmed and could use some support or you want to know more about managing stress please get in touch