In our previous post we talked about some of the warning signs of stress, especially stress that can occur during the holidays, for each of the 16 Myers-Briggs personality types. As a reminder, we’re not talking about the sort of severe stress that could cause trauma or that stems from illness, but rather everyday can’t-get-it-all-done-in-time stress that’s especially common during the holidays.
Now let’s take a look at how you can use your knowledge of Myers-Briggs® type to help you recognize and hopefully remedy that stress. Below are a few ways to manage stress that can apply to all Myers-Briggs types, and we’ve found them to be a good starting point. Stress can take a toll on you mentally, emotionally, and physically, and the first tips for calming down fast pertain to your physical body. Keep reading for specific recommendations of actions for each of the 16 Myers-Briggs personality types to help remedy holiday (or any) stress.
A great way to deal with stress is to get up and move. Whether that be going for a quick walk outside, flowing through a few heart-pumping sun salutations, or even doing jumping jacks or sit-ups, these are all ways to get your blood moving and help calm you down. “Exercise relaxes tense muscles that become tight and rigid when you experience stress,” says Kathleen Hall, chief executive of The Stress Institute in Atlanta, Georgia, an educational and training firm that focuses on the effects of stress and how to relieve it. “Exercise delivers oxygen to the brain, vital organs, and muscles immediately and produces endorphins that soothe your mind and body.”
Do a Stress Check
Dr. Oz recommends doing a stress check to try to figure out how stressed you are. Are your shoulders hunched up next to your ears? Are you leaning over in a position that could hurt your back? Are you pacing or bouncing your legs up and down? Is your breathing shallow and quick? Taking a mental note of these physical symptoms of stress and then actively trying to eliminate them (e.g., by lowering and relaxing your shoulders, sitting up straight) will help reduce your stress immediately. Speaking of breathing…
Find a quiet place and take five minutes to slow your breathing. Take a deep breath in through your nose, hold it for a count of three, then slowly let it out through your mouth. Or try what stress expert Wendy Duncan calls “heart coherence” breathing. First, place your left hand over your heart, then imagine your breath flowing through your heart. Take four counts to breathe in and another four counts to breathe out. Then imagine the feelings of love, joy, or compassion radiating out of you like beams of light.
“This method was discovered in the late 1970s during heart transplant research,” says Duncan, founder of Wendy Duncan International in Redmond, Oregon, which offers stress-relief programs, retreats, and workshops. According to Duncan, “The key finding is that your heart has its own brain and intelligence. Heart activity impacts you dramatically and others around you. Synchronizing your heart and mind has immediate benefits in relieving stress.”
A little less stressed now? Good! Want to help others de-stress? You can share this blog from the buttons on the right of the screen to help others recognize signs of stress. Additionally, help your friends and family stress less about finding a gift for you by heading over to the MBTI holiday page and sharing a hint on Facebook or via email about something you’d really enjoy this holiday season (and they may not have to brave the stressful shopping malls to get it!). After you share, you’ll be able to access the MBTI Gift Guide with gift suggestions for each of the 16 MBTI personality types.
Speaking of each of the 16 personality types, below are a few ideas to try (or recommend to others) when signs of stress for each Myers-Briggs personality type become visible.
Stress Remedies for Each of the Myers-Briggs Personality Types:
ISTJ and ISFJ – Now that you know the signs of stress, one remedy might be to take some time alone to appreciate the details around you. Or think about other times when stressful situations ended positively.
ESTP and ESFP – Now that you know the signs of stress, we suggest that this type not forget to ask others for help. Even if it’s just a little reassurance, reach out to others when you’re stressed.
INFJ and INTJ – Now that you know the signs of stress, one remedy might be to ensure you schedule some downtime or time for yourself to re energize.
ENFP and ENTP – Now that you know the signs of stress, make sure to pay attention to your physical needs, such as the need for exercise. Also remember that sometimes it’s OK to say no.
ISTP and INTP – Now that you know the signs of stress, one remedy might be to take time to regroup. Try to mentally take yourself out of the situation for a different vantage point.
ESTJ and ENTJ – Now that you know the signs of stress, try to remedy that stress by doing some physical activity or talking to someone close to you.
ISFP and INFP – Now that you know the signs of stress, spend as much time alone as you need. Focus on what’s right rather than what’s wrong.
ESFJ and ENFJ – Now that you know the signs of stress, one remedy might be to talk things over with someone outside the situation. In addition, be sure to take time to refocus on your values.