What are some good practices to deal with sudden stress? Tips for quick meditation?

Randy De Montalegre ‏@randyaaron: What are some good practices to deal with sudden stress. Tips for quick meditation?


I had sudden stress yesterday. A deal that was supposed to go through didn’t go through. Another deal that is going through has me worried about being paid. Plus I had to figure out what to feed my kids. All stressful!

There’s a few methods I use for quick meditation.

A) First, I label all worry thoughts, “not useful”. Worrying has never gotten me anwhere. In 44 years of intense worrying, not a single worry thought has improved my life and has often gave birth to more worry, more anxiety, more paranoid, and kept me from thoughts that would positively contribute to my success and happiness. By labeling a thought “not useful” you put distance between the REAL YOU and the thought that has invaded you. The more you label, the greater the distance eventually becomes. Until finally worry knows not to come near you. It is a distant speck on the horizon, a canyon of bliss separating you from “the other”.

B) Thinking under your shoulder. I don’t know what to call this technique but it is what it says. I try to think my worries and stress with the space right underneath my right shoulder (an arbitrary place). My mind suddenly starts to freak out. It calls out to me, “wait a second! Get back here! I’m worrying up here!!” and it wants me to return my attention to where the thoughts actually are. But keep breathing and thinking right underneath your right shoulder. You can’t think there because there’s no brain there. But you can try. This reduces stress because the space under your right shoulder simply can’t feel stress.

C) The Alien Technique. I’m suddenly an alien from outer space that has been transported for 24 hours to this body. My mission: to clean things up. The first thing I always notice is that I think to myself: “whom this body doesn’t have it so bad. What’s he so worried about.” And then I (“the alien”) starts to do things that incrementally improves my life. He’s on a mission! Let him do his job.

D) Surrender. Life never throws anything at you that you can’t handle. Surrender to that. You know you will be able to handle it if you remain healthy and don’t succumb to the worry. Life will help you even if it seems there’s no way out. Look for the lessons in what you are learning. Surrender to those lessons and to the fact that you will learn much more in this particular class before it’s over.

E) The Visitor. Similar to the “Alien” but slightly different. This is my belief. Shed your body, shed your thoughts (which are not the real you but just these things that past like fish across the aquarium of your brain, shed your emotions (which are based on your programming since birth but still not the real you) and you are left with this silence, deep down, that is observing all of the above. Even go deeper. Who is observing the observer. This is the real you. But it’s the same thing inside everyone. It’s all connected. This is “The Visitor” a little chunk of silence that is 15 billion years old or more, the silence that existed before the Big Bang, a silence that you are a tiny carved-off chunk of. This Visitor is inside of you. He never feels stress. You are HIM. Visualize you are this visitor. Go beneath the thoughts that are so temporary and don’t really exist (the Visitor laughs at them with his 15 billion years of experience). Visualize this as much as possible. What can affect the Visitor?

F) Tense Up. Tense every muscle in your body for five seconds. Then relax. You just put your body in fight or flight mode. Then relaxed it. You will feel less stress.

G) Stretch. Hold your hands above your head. Turn your hands upside down and interlace them and then push them, palms up, to the sky. Stretch as high as possible, even going on the balls of your feet. Take a deep breath. Inhale all the bad in the world into you – you take in the bad. Then exhale good. You are saving the world with that exhale! Then lean a bit to the left, do the same. Lean a bit to the right, do the same. Then lean forward, all the way down, bend your knees, shake your head, take a deep breath, and then slowly come back. This is a good physical meditation. Claudia is making a video on this technique for relieving sudden stress.

H) BREATHING. This always works. Inhale for 20 seconds. Hold for 20 seconds. Exhale for 20 seconds. Hold for 20 seconds. Rest a bit. Then repeat. Do that four times. Your body will be shocked by what you are doing. It will go into survival mode. You can’t stress when your oxygen is being messed up like that. It’s a temporary salve but it works. My favorite of the above though is the Visitor.

If I had any religion, it’s that.

You Are the Visitor. You are 15 billion years old. And these thoughts of stress are not useful. Then do “F” and “G” to physically remove them. Then Surrender to the mystery around us that all will be taken care of. Then do what you need to do RIGHT NOW.