Relieving the Stress of EPPP Study


Whether caused by a full schedule or life circumstances, stress can be an unwanted guest at your EPPP study session. There are quick ways to relieve stress that won’t get in the way of the time you have carefully set aside to study.

Psychology Today published 7 Stress Relief Strategies You Can Do in 10 Minutes or Less  Here are some highlights of the quick tips author Paula Davis-Laack J.D., M.A.P.P suggests to cope with stress.

The Power Approach

Kick stress out of your study session with confidence. Taking a power stance by standing up straight with your shoulders back and your chest puffed can physically reverse the crippling effect of too much stress.

“Based on the work of Dr. Amy Cuddy, power posing involves literally putting yourself in a physical position of power, which then causes your brain to think in a more confident way.”

The Generous Approach

Positivity is powerful. Davis-Laack suggests doing someone a five minute favor or, “Rather than trade value back and forth with someone, make it your goal to add value.” For example, if it’s your turn to bring coffee to the study group, think of how you can do one better. Perhaps accompany the coffee with your group’s favorite scones.

Another generous approach to keeping stress out of your study sessions is to create a gratitude wall or board. Create a space, whether it’s a cork board, chalk board, or a designated area of a wall, for others to write down or pin a post-it note of what they are thankful for. Put it where you can most often see it while studying.

The Technique Approach  

A tangible technique in mindfulness suggested by Davis-Laack is to think through the acronym STOP.

“S:  Stop.  Literally, stop what you are doing and pay attention to how you’re feeling and what you’re thinking.

T:  Take a breath.  Taking a quick breath or two helps you to re-center and re-focus.

O:  Observe.  Take a mental note of where you feel tension in your muscles.  Are your shoulders tight?  Is your jaw clenched?  What are you thinking, and are those thoughts productive or counterproductive?

P:  Proceed.  Now that you have a little additional information about the sources of stress in your environment, proceed with what you were doing.  The goal is to go about your merry way, but in a more intentional and balanced way.”

Another helpful acronym to relieve stress is B.A.D.I and was mentioned in our blog some years back. This acronym is geared toward stress prevention and overall stress management:

B: Breath and relax before proceeding.

A: Assess your resources such as family, friends, and neighbors. Think about the special tools or skills you possess that could be used to make your schedule run more smoothly.

D: Decide on a plan of action that uses the resources you’ve assessed.

I: Implement the plan with flexibility. Things can and will come up, so flexibility is important to keep stress at bay when things don’t go as planned.

Which strategies stand out to you? Give those ones a try.


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