Stress by Dra Ana Maria Barrios Escobar

 There has been a major storm in our economy for almost two years now. Understandably, this resulted in many people feeling very stressed. When you’re overly stressed the chemistry in your brain changes. Your problem solving abilities are reduced and your judgment is diminished – you may even experience an increase in aggression. In fact, being stressed it is a very similar state as being drunk! This is no state to be in when making important decisions about any area of your life.

When the markets hit tremendous lows in the past year and a half, many investors panicked under the stress and sold all their investments. In most cases, this was a major mistake because they sold low and locked in all those loses. They did so because they were stressed and not thinking clearly. The Dow Jones has increased by about 40 percent since March, 2009 – unfortunately, anyone who panicked and sold stock before that date lost out on those huge market gains. Before you make any major decisions in any stormy circumstances, discover how to overcome the effects of stress on your brain.
Here are some simple and quick steps to take to begin to relax and reduce stress:

Ø Take at least 3 deep, slow, regular breaths – this will start to slow your heart rate, lower your blood pressure and restore cognitive clarity.

Ø As you breathe, let your shoulders relax and loosen your jaw – you may be surprised at how much tension you hold in your jaw.

Ø Focus your mind on the present moment – to help you with this maybe focus your attention on your breath passing through your nostrils as you breathe, or pick a spot on the wall or floor and focus your eyes gently on that spot. When focusing on the present moment you prevent yourself from regretting the past and fearing the future – both of which increase stress. (For a deeper understanding of this concept, read The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle.)

Ø When uncomfortable thoughts and feelings arise, don’t try to ignore them but acknowledge them as if from a distance and label them – recent research at UCLA proves this practice allows you to detach from negative emotions so they do not hijack your calmness.

Once you sense you are relaxed, you can start to look at your situation more realistically. Perhaps first take a break, go for a walk, get out in the fresh air and sunlight – it is advisable not to make major decisions during the dark of night when your mind seems to magnify problems. Then, like the serenity prayer says, accept the things you cannot change and have the courage to change the things you can. Regarding the things you cannot change – e.g., the markets crashing – simply accept the situation and let go of any tension you feel about it. If there is nothing you can do about it, why worry?

Regarding the things you can change. Once you are relaxed and mental clarity has been restored to your brain, make an objective list of what you need to do – not one swayed by emotion. Then, calmly and as relaxed as possible, complete each task to the best of your ability.
Will this calm the outer storm in our economy and stop the markets crashing? No. But it will calm the storm within you and make you less likely to do something irrational that you will later regret.


Add a comment 15 June, 2010
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Continue Reading Add a comment 31 December, 2008
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The concept “to achieve success” cannot be specifically defined for the masses because success can be defined quite differently by each individual. Therefore, in order to achieve success, it is first necessary to come to terms with your own personal definition of success. Each individual’s own definition of will be influenced by several key factors:

  • Success is subject to individual interpretation based on upbringing, past experiences, role models, personal motivations and goals. For some it might be to own a home in an upscale neighborhood, while for others it might be a career in the Peace Corps. Carefully contemplate your definition of success based on your values—not what your brother-in-law or Madison Avenue tells you it is.
  • Your view of success will change at various times throughout your life. For example, what might be deemed successful in college or on your first job is very different from successfully raising a family or comfortably retiring in the Caribbean. Your definition of success will continue to change, so don’t make the error of pursuing an outdated version of it.
  • When you achieve success, it is sometimes measurable and sometimes not. Accumulating a certain amount of wealth is one measure, but a successful marriage may be far more meaningful to many people and can only be measured by how the two partners feel about each other as the years go by.
  • Very few people achieve success accidentally. Most people who achieve success first defined it then planned for it; they set a goal to achieve it.

Once you have defined what it means to achieve success for yourself, your next step is to set goals that will lead you to your definition of success. You must create realistic, viable plans to achieve those goals. Follow your plans, be flexible, and enjoy the process. It’s not about keeping up with the Joneses.

Here are five simple steps to help you define and achieve success:

Achieve Success Step #1: Identify Your Goal

Clearly determine what the goal is. Be specific.

  • Bad: “To lose weight”
  • Good: “To lose 10 pounds in a healthy way”

Achieve Success Step #2: Identify Your Obstacles

List all the obstacles standing between you (or your team) and the goal. Identify resources, assistance, information or anything else that might be needed to reach the goal. As your writing, don’t get discouraged by the obstacles– they’re absolutely necessary to help you with the next step in completing your plan.

Achieve Success Step #3: List Tasks to Overcome Each Obstacle

Taking each obstacle one at a time, write one or more ways the obstacle could be overcome. These are tasks (or action items) that will comprise your to-do list. Expect to have several tasks per obstacle.

Achieve Success Step #4: Assign Task Deadlines and Set Up Task Reminders or Other Alerts

Assign a start and completion date to each task in the plan. It’s ok to be working on several different tasks at the same time, but don’t overdo it. Be realistic. Assign a reminder or alert to each task in the plan to keep you on track. If you’re using, you can specify how often you want to be reminded via email of every task you’ve listed in your plan. You can choose to be reminded daily, weekly, monthly, at random, etc.

Achieve Success Step #5: Follow Your Success Plan

If you use, by the time to you’ve reached this step, you will have defined a GoalPlanTM. Complete each task in succession. Revisit your GoalPlan often and make sure to use your reminder system to keep you on track.

Additional Suggestions to Achieve Success:

  • If your success plan is too long or complicated, try breaking it into several smaller, more manageable plans.
  • Don’t rely on luck or things outside your control as part of your success plan.
  • Be flexible–expect your success plan to change before you complete it. Circumstances change, unexpected events occur, and your plan should be updated to adapt to changes. Use planning software such as to help construct your plan and modify it regularly.
  • Seek the input of others who have expertise in the area or who have completed a similar goal.
  • Reward yourself for partial success as significant milestones are accomplished.

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How to Achieve success in life

Every Successful person has a set of step that they follow to achieve their goals and dreams.

I’m here to share them with you.

So here we go…

1. Make the Decision to be Successful! … Success is not an accident; you make your own success by what you do or failed to do.

2. Learn the Inner Game… In order to be successful, you have to understand that first you have to become successful in your mind. Your mind is a toolbox, and like any other toolbox, you have to keep your tools clean and ready to work for you.

3. Set Reachable Goals… If you don’t have any goals, it will be very hard to succeed. Setting goals is one of the most important things you need to do to be successful. It will be your road map of where you want to go.

Write down your Goals, yearly, monthly and weekly. Break your goals into little action steps, and celebrate as you accomplish every single one of them.

4. Action… Don’t waste time trying to figure out the best way or the fastest way, if you want to be Successful, there are no shortcuts!!!

Finally, DO IT NOW!!!

Success don’t wait.

For your Success,

AnaMaria Barrios

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Ana Maria Barrios Biography

I am a person who believes in the power of human potential. Researching the science of success and achievement for more than 20 years, I had spent the last decade working behind the scenes in the personal development industry. I am a Clinic Psychologist author/narrator, of the Psychology of Achievement, I am a true cosmopolitan person, having lived, studied and worked in many parts of the world, Including Middle East, Europe, North America, Central America, and South America. I am in touch with myself….with the times…and with people. My writings on how people can change their lives using the mind and body connection The mind and body connection is the gateway to unlimited creativity and happiness. Unfortunately, our society has not taught us how to use it. We are pure potential waited to be activated. I teach how to achieve freedom beyond all boundaries.

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