Life keeps throwing us curve balls. Demands at work. Difficult colleagues. Conflicts. Family obligations. Financial stresses. Ageing parents. Illnesses. Traffic jams and much more. It’s easy to get overwhelmed and stressed, isn’t it?

As you run from one commitment to another, trying not to let things fall through, worry and doubts often creep in.

"Will I be able to cover my EMI payments this month?"
"How can I work with my boss, he is impossible!?”
“Will I get enough clients this month?”
“Will my son get his college admission?”

Anxiety becomes the driver of life. Emotional overwhelm and fatigue become commonplace and feelings of frustration and irritation are constant. Our life, our body, our relationships, all feel out of balance and in disharmony. Looking after our emotional wellness helps us get the very most out of life.

It’s not about the absence of stress or escaping to a peaceful abode in the mountains to find peace, but experiencing a deeper sense of inner calmness in the midst of chaos. My main message is how can people stay grounded in the shifting sand of life.

Here are five strategies that are immensely helpful in finding and staying in your center, even in the most stressful times.

Strategy #1: Close your eyes and breathe

It’s really that simple. Stop what you are doing. Just close your eyes and focus on your breath. When you’re out of the center and emotional balance, one thing is certain: you’re not breathing properly. When your mind is racing, your breath is uneven.

When you consciously take a few deep breaths, you will instantly feel the difference. Follow this process.

  1. Sit straight, relax your shoulders
  2. Take deep, slow, rhythmic, quiet, breaths
  3. Allow your mind to quieten down as you focus on the breath
  4. After a minute, take a deep breath up to the count of 5, hold it for 2 seconds and slowly exhale at the count of 5 again.

Continue doing this for a couple of times till you feel a sense of quietness and settling in.

Strategy #2: Shift Your Awareness

When you’re out of the center, you’re often over-thinking. Too much energy is swirling in your head. Put both feet firmly on the ground. Place your full awareness on the bottom of your feet. This helps draw the excessive energy down into your body. Pay attention to any sensations in your feet. This practice often works within 30 seconds.

Strategy #3: Journaling

Write about your current challenges: problems, fears, upsets, insecurities, and frustrations. Dump it in a journal. Once the emotions are expressed and out of the mind, it is easier to center yourself again.

Strategy #4: Let go of wanting to control

Many of us find it difficult to let go of the need to control every situation. Often this can be very exhausting. Let go, surrender, trust life and trust your own ability to handle all that comes your way. You can’t control every situation in life, so don’t waste your energy trying to change things. It’s time to loosen up and simply flow!

Strategy #5: Be Playful

Seriousness is a sign you’re out of the center. Seriousness creates a lot of internal tension.

Just imagine for a moment you lived a life where you are more light-hearted and willing to laugh at yourself and the awkward circumstances that life throws your way. Just imagine how much less stress, worry, and anxiety you would experience. Wouldn’t life just be better? You only get to live one life so why not make the most of it?

Looking after our emotional wellness helps us get the very most out of life. When we feel emotionally balanced, we feel more centered and connected to our internal intelligence. We become more productive, better at making decisions, more present, and the very best version of ourselves. We all deserve a good, happy life. If not now, when?