Let's talk about stress. Everyone has experienced stress at some point and knows what it feels like to be overwhelmed. Since stress can impact your mental and physical health, it can be helpful to talk about it and find ways to navigate through difficult situations.
One way to start a conversation about stress is to host a workshop or meeting. The meeting can take place whereever you feel it might benefit the participants: your workplace, your school, or even at home. You can use the presentation below as a starting point. Not only does it address how stress affects the mind and body, but it also covers different types of stress and how to recognize the warning signs. Lastly, it offers coping strategies for anyone to use.
How to Use the Stress Management Presentation
If you've decided to host a conversation about stress management, give yourself a pat on the back. Seriously.
When you openly talk about life's challenges, you show others that their well-being is important and that they're not alone. In addition, it shows the people around you that you are willing and able to hold space for their needs.
There is a lot of stigma surrounding mental health. This can prevent people from reaching out for help when they need it and expressing their real experiences with stress. When you share this presentation, you give the people around you an opportunity to talk about things they may have been bottling up. Not only can this create a sense of relief, but it allows us to learn from one another and find new skills for stress management.
To use this presentation simply click "Go to File" below and then choose "Make a Copy" when prompted. Your new editable presentation will appear in that same tab within a few seconds.
Explore the Topic of Stress
Before you start your presentation, be sure to explore the slides. Make sure all of the topics that you want to address are covered. You can also take this time to print out additional materials or explore further readings that might be helpful.
Some additional topics you might want to explore are:
- Basic Strategies in Stress Management
- Stress Management and Spirituality
- Stress Management Group Activities
- Stress Management Lesson Plans
- 9 Ways to Practice Stress Management Every Day
At the end of your presentation, you can also share the resources with the members of your group. In addition, if the people around you seem interested, you can explore further worksheets and group activities that can help people cope as a community.
Personalize Your Presentation
Not everyone experiences the same kind of stress. There can be a wide variety of factors that cause people to be overwhelmed, whether it's their work environment, their home life, or trying to find a balance between the two.
Think about the challenges that your specific group might be experiencing. Then use this insight to personalize your presentation to fit your group's unique needs.
Some factors you might want to include are:
- Financial stress
- Specific struggles of being a single parent
- Stress when breaking habits or battling addiction, such as quitting smoking
- Work-related stress for specific professionals, such as police officers or medical students
You can also ask your group for recommendations beforehand. Simply ask them what factors in their life are a cause of stress or if there are any specific kinds of stress they're interested in learning about. Then, you can bring this information along with resources to address these needs.
Practice a Technique Together
Make time during the presentation to test out a coping strategy or two. One of the best ways to help people decide which techniques work for them is to give them some hands-on experience. This can take as little as five to ten minutes and can provide people with a reliable tool they know they can turn to whenever things become overwhelming.
Take some time during the presentation to try one of the following skills outlined in the slides:
- Controlled Breathing
- Creating a daily or weekly schedule
- Physical activity
Some activities may require materials, such as journaling or creating a schedule. Be sure to have these on hand if this is your group's chosen activity. In addition, if you choose meditation, you can use a guided meditation script or an audio meditation guide to help you along the way.
Leave Room for Questions and Comments
Another great way for people to learn from the presentation is to give your group time to speak their minds, ask questions, and share their experiences. You can pause between every few slides for questions and comments, or wait to field them all at the end of your talk. This way, the people within your group can act as resources and a support system for one another.
You can also come prepared with questions of your own to encourage participation. Some questions might include:
- How do you all usually respond when you feel stressed?
- How many times a week do you feel overwhelmed?
- What strategies do you currently use when you feel stressed?
- What are some signs that you're feeling overwhelmed?
- What's one thing you would like to improve on when it comes to stress?
If you have a small group then everyone might be able to participate in the conversation at the same time. However, if you have a large group, you might want to consider breaking out into smaller groups or partnering up.
Make it an Ongoing Conversation
People are constantly exposed to stress. One presentation is a great start, but you might want to consider further conversations. Address the topic in future meetings, check in with your group members, and ask how you all can support each other through resources and community building.
If this is your first time leading this type of conversation, just do the best you can and remember to be gentle with yourself. You're addressing a very important issue, and that's something to be proud of. Our overall well-being is important, and you're holding space and providing resources to ensure just that.