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101 Ways to Cope with Stress

Facilitators’ Guide

Yvonne Bergmans, ASR Chair in Suicide Studies

(Courtesy of the Tripler Regional Medical Center, Honolulu, Hawaii)

(Sheet given by group member)

1. get up 15 minutes earlier

2. prepare for the morning the night before

3. avoid tight fitting clothes

4. avoid relying on chemical aids

5. set appointments ahead

6. don’t rely on your memory…write it down

7. practice preventative maintenance

8. make duplicate keys

9. say “no” more often

10. set priorities in your life

11. avoid negative people

12. use time wisely

13. simplify meal times

14. always make copies of important papers

15. anticipate your needs

16. repair anything that doesn’t work properly

17. ask for help with the jobs you dislike

18. break large tasks into bite size proportions

19. look at problems as challenges

20. look at challenges differently

21. unclutter your life

22. smile

23. be prepared for rain

24. tickle a baby

25. pet a friendly cat/dog

26. don’t know all the answers

27. look for a silver lining

28. say something nice to someone

29. teach a kid to fly a kite

30. walk in the rain

31. schedule play time every day

32. take a bubble bath

33. be aware of the decisions you make

34. believe in yourself

35. stop saying negative things to yourself

36. visualize yourself winning

37. develop your sense of humour

38. stop thinking tomorrow will be a better day

39. gave goals for yourself

40. dance a jig

41. say “hello” to a stranger

42. ask a friend for a hug

43. look up at the stars

44. practice breathing slowly

45. learn to whistle a tune

46. read a poem

47. listen to a symphony

48. watch a ballet

49. read a story curled up in bed

50. do a brand new thing

51. stop a bad habit

52. buy yourself a flower

53. take time to smell the flowers

54. find support from others

55. ask someone to be your “vent partner”

56. work at being cheerful and optimistic

57. put safety first

58. do everything in moderation

59. pay attention to your appearance

60. strive for excellence NOT perfection

61. stretch your limits a little each day

62. look at a work of art

63. hum a jingle

64. maintain your weight

65. plant a tree

66. feed the birds

67. practice grace under pressure

68. stand up and stretch

69. always have a plan “b”

70. learn a new doodle

71. memorize a joke

72. be responsible for your feelings

73. learn a new doodle

74. learn to meet your own needs

75. become a better listener

76. know your limitations and let others know them too

77. tell someone to have a good day in pig Latin

78. throw a paper airplane

79. exercise every day

80. learn the words to a new song

81. get to work early

82. clean out your closet

83. play patty cake with a toddler

84. go on a picnic

85. take a different route to work

86. leave work early (with permission)

87. put air freshener in your car

88. watch a movie and eat popcorn

89. write a letter to a far away friend

90. go to a ball game and scream

91. cook a meal and eat it by candlelight

92. recognize the importance of unconditional love

93. remember that stress is an attitude

94. keep a journal

95. practice a monster smile

96. remember you always have options

97. have a support network of people, places and things

98. quit trying to fix other people

99. get enough sleep

100. talk less and listen more

101. freely praise other people

Re-printed with Permission by Yvonne Bergmans, BEd, MSW, RSW St Michael’s Hospital, Toronto. Developer of the Psychosocial/Psychoeducational Intervention for People with Recurrent Suicide Attempts (P.I.S.A.) 2013.

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