Learn the CALM Technique to reduce stress!
by Barb Roose
Do you remember that 90’s song, “Y’all gonna make me lose my mind / Up in here, Up in here”?
While a hugely popular rap song, it’s also the unofficial anthem of the super-stressed out or anxious person. It’s the kind of song you’re tempted to spit out when the unexpected or uninvited chaos pushes you mentally, emotionally or financially toward the edge. Have you ever felt like you might lose your mind over the following:
- …Your car repair cost may require listing your kidney on Ebay;**
- …You have to wait all weekend to call the doctor for test results on Monday morning;
- …You’ve been hearing layoffs rumors.
When uncertainty or chaos lands in our lives, our bodies feel the stress and we experience symptoms like: a racing heartbeat, nausea, sweaty palms, numbness or the inability to sleep. It’s so hard to pray when we’re feeling stressed out! Yet, connecting with God is our best chance to find help and hope in our chaotic or uncertain situations.
A few weeks ago, I was heading out of town for multiple speaking engagements the weekend that my new book and Joshua Bible study launched. It was an important weekend! So, when I lost my rental car keys and then found them locked in my regular car (and my husband had the only keys to that car), my stress level soared through the roof.
Yet, I knew that I couldn’t let my emotions be in charge of the situation because God was truly in control.
So, I activated one of the tools that I developed to help me reduce those physical anxiety symptoms so that I could reconnect with God. It’s called the CALM Technique. This is one of the many tools that I’ve included in my new book, Winning the Worry Battle. Give it a try!
- Count to 10 (Inhale on the number; Exhale the word MISSISSIPPI)
- Acknowledge God’s presence by saying: God, I know that You’re here with me right now.
- List – Tell God what you are afraid of or worried about
- Meditate – Keep repeating the following: God is here and He will take care of me/this.
This exercise can reduce your physical distress so that you can open up a conversation with God. I love this tool because it equips us to walk in the blessing of God’s promise in Joshua 1:9: “This is my command—be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” (NLT)
I don’t know what’s on your mind today. But, if you’re prone to meltdowns like me, practice the C.A.L.M. technique a few times today. Then you’ll be ready to use this tool to help you calm down during anxious times and connect with the God who promises to take care of you.
**Okay, so listing kidneys on Ebay is sooooo illegal. But, I don’t think that I needed to tell you that…
JOIN THE CONVERSATION: What are you stressed out about today?