Episode 154: Working through Stress in Relationships

Episode 154: Working through Stress in Relationships

SUBSCRIBE TO OUR AWESOME CHANNEL BY CLICKING IN ANY OF OUR BUTTONS BELOW!

Stress and relationships seem to go hand in hand, and it doesn’t always have the best outcomes. But what if it could? This is part two of a two-part series with Dr. Mariam Coaster and in this episode, she is sharing practical tips for all of us working moms on how we can show up as our best selves, and restore relationships in spite of the stress around them.

ABOUT OUR GUEST

Mariam Coaster Ph.D., LMFT (InRelationship.us; mariamcoaster.com) is a wife to a wonderful husband, and mother to two beautiful children, a two-year-old boy, and a 3-month-old girl. Professionally, she has a doctorate in neuroscience and is a licensed marriage and family therapist. She primarily works with couples and women at her private practice in Franklin, TN. She is passionate about helping people grow towards healing and restoration in their closest relationships. She is also the co-founder of InRelationship, and a marriage workshop called 7 Conversations to Enrich your Marriage. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her family, cooking up a new-found recipe, and being actively involved in her church.

TIPS SHARED ON THE SHOW

Working through stressors in relationships We navigate stress in relationships through ownership and re-connection. This results in greater emotional health, holiness and healing in relationships.

Own your part: taking ownership for your part in the stress by spending time in self-reflection and prayer

1) Choosing to step away from the distressing relationship to gather yourself.

2) During self-reflection, pray for humility, wisdom and connection with God and yourself.

3) Use the stress indicators (feelings, thoughts and body sensations) to slow down and access heart issues:

a. What is really bothering me about this relationship?

b. What am I choosing to rely on or hope in more than God? What heart issues or ruling desires can I let go of?

c. How can the Gospel reorient my perspective to accept Christ’s perfect, sufficient grace, and therefore extend mercy, grace and love in the relationship?

ACTION ITEMS

Initiate Re-connection

1) Pray for wisdom on how to approach the relationship – ask for an opportune time to share your heart.

2) Share how your stress indicators (feelings, thoughts, and body sensations) showed up for you in the relationship.

3) Share heart issues or desires that became inordinately important during the stress. Share about your own repentance and how God gave you perspective in the situation.

4) Ask for what you may need to restore connection with that person, and talk about how to work through such a stressor together in the future.

LEARN MORE ABOUT OUR GUEST

Mariam Coaster
Occupation:
Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist
Email:
mariam@mariamcoaster.com
Website
inrelationship.usmariamcoaster.com
Social Media Links
inrelationship.us

Life balance at your fingertips? Yes, we got it right here on our official Your Life Rocks life balance app! Download free now.

Episode 153: How to Deal when Stress is a Heart Issue

Episode 153: How to Deal when Stress is a Heart Issue

Catch the latest episodes at any of our platforms below!

Stress is a part of our lives, but there is a healthy way to deal with it. Today my guest is a fellow working mom, Dr. Mariam Coaster and we are talking all about our internal relationship with stress and how our relationship with God plays into it. Join us, as Mariam shares practical tips on how we can self-assess our stress and give you strategies to show up as your best self when we find ourselves at our worst. This is part one of a two-part series. Join us next week as we move the conversation to discuss stress and our relationships.

ABOUT OUR GUEST

Mariam Coaster Ph.D., LMFT (InRelationship.us; mariamcoaster.com) is a wife to a wonderful husband, and mother to two beautiful children, a two-year-old boy, and a 3-month-old girl. Professionally, she has a doctorate in neuroscience and is a licensed marriage and family therapist. She primarily works with couples and women at her private practice in Franklin, TN. She is passionate about helping people grow towards healing and restoration in their closest relationships. She is also the co-founder of InRelationship, and a marriage workshop called 7 Conversations to Enrich your Marriage. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her family, cooking up a new-found recipe, and being actively involved in her church.

TIPS SHARED ON THE SHOW

Stress is a God-given opportunity to grow in humility, wisdom, and connection.

  • Humility because we recognize that we are not ultimately in control of our lives.

  • Wisdom because we can receive greater perspective and insight about our relationships.

  • Connection because God never intended for us to go through this life on our own.

Identifying stress in ourselves and our relationships. There are three internal stress indicators that God created in everyone:

1) Feelings: what emotions are coming up about God, ourselves, and others in this stressful situation?

2) Thoughts: what beliefs and cognition are coming up about God, ourselves and others regarding this stressful situation?

3) Body sensations – where in your body do you notice the stress? [Our brain processes stress by initiating the fight, flight or freeze mechanism. It also initiates us to seek out connection during stressful times.]

The internal stress indicators help access heart issues.

A heart issue is a desire to rely on or trust in anything more than God himself. Examples include a pride, self-righteousness, self-reliance, desperate need for approval, control, power, false identity, etc. Even good desires, when they become ruling or dominating desires, will become a stressor in relationships.

LEARN MORE ABOUT OUR GUEST

Mariam Coaster
Occupation:
Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist
Email:
mariam@mariamcoaster.com
Website
inrelationship.usmariamcoaster.com
Social Media Links
inrelationship.us

Life balance at your fingertips? Yes, we got it right here on our official Your Life Rocks life balance app! Download free now.

Episode 152: Proactively Influence the Stress in your Life

Episode 152: Proactively Influence the Stress in your Life

Never miss an episode by subscribing to any of our channels below!

Hey guys! I am so glad you are here. We are going into Fall and I could not be more excited. Don’t get me wrong I love summer, but Fall is my favorite time of the year. It’s like second new year’s eve, kind of… like a fresh start. Summer is a little bit of a slower, more casual pace where Fall… well, things just get busier. And with busyness comes with stress. Well, we can’t avoid stress, it is ever present in our busy lives, but there are times that seem to be more stressful.

So, as always, I have got your back. We are kicking off a series all about stress and I could not be more excited to bring it to you. Over the course of the next few weeks, we will be talking about stress from a mental, spiritual, relational and physical perspective. We have some really incredible guests lined up for you to learn from so if you have not done so already, make sure you hit subscribe so you don’t miss it.

Now if you are listening inside of the Life Balance app, you don’t have to do anything. The new episodes will just roll right in for you. Do you have the Your Life Rocks app yet? You should go download it today if not. Not only will you find all the podcasts in there, but you will have access to the Weekly Success Planning tool that will show you step by step how to uplevel your prep day to have a more balanced week, plus the weekly planning Checklist. All for free. Now, if you’re ready to really define balance for yourself and create it in your life, then you can upgrade inside the app to Life Balance Membership where you will have access to all the courses, monthly group coaching, and more tools to help you shine and stay focused. It’s in both iTunes and Google play store so I hope you check it out.

Like I said before, we are kicking off a series all about stress and we are starting today. Now there are many things that can influence our wellbeing. Things that influence peace and harmony in our lives and things that influence stress and conflict. And the amazing thing is, these things influence everything, every area of life. In preparing for this episode to talk to you all about stress, I was originally going to give you 3 tips to help you alleviate stress in your surroundings. But, because God is so awesome, he really used this last week to teach me a thing or two about stress. You see, I always pray about the show. I always ask for God to lead the conversation and when I had the idea to do a series on stress, well I should have seen the stress coming, right? Well in the process of living through one of the most stressful months of my life, and interviewing experts on the topic, praying about it daily and really searching God in every situation, I had a realization. The tactic that I used to affect change in my career was the same tactic that I needed to use for my life.

I mentioned influence before and I learned this tactic of influence and affecting change through one of my all-time favorite business books. It’s called The Influencer. I’ll link to it in the show notes if you want to grab it. In the book, they talk about the 6 sources of influence that you need to focus on when you want to influence change. It’s essentially your ability and motivation that presents itself personally, socially, and structurally. For today’s episode, we are going to go through these to proactively deal with stress. Cause like it or not stress is a part of our lives, especially as working moms. It’s coming and we need to be ready for it.

Let’s first look at ourselves personally. For this category, I’m not going to talk about the personal ability to deal with stress because our stress resilience is so different from one person to the next. And honestly, next week’s episode deals with that topic so greatly. But I do want to talk for just a moment about personal motivation. Are you motivated to live a more peaceful life or do you like being stressed? Does your stress level tie into your identity? Does it make you feel important or worthy? We have talked about this before in previous episodes, but we called it “busy”. You see, some of us are seeking peace and balance in our lives, but somewhere along the line being a mess is serving us in some way. It might be keeping you feeling safe, from showing up and being the bright light you were created to be. It might be so that others expect less out of you if you are giving off the impression of stress and busy. Or it could just be that it makes you feel important. Maybe you had a role model in the past that demonstrated being stressed all the time and it just kind of stuck as a model to emulate. If this is you, and you are seeking peace, you won’t find it unless your motivation for peace is greater than your motivation for stress.

It reminds me of one of my favorite stories of the Bible, from John 5. It’s the one with the man at the spring laying there for years and not doing the things that he believed would make him well. He didn’t get in the springs, there was always an excuse on why he couldn’t. But he was close enough to it to make it look like he was making an effort. Jesus saw right to his heart and asked, “Do you want to get well?”

Sometimes we need to ask ourselves that same question and be really honest with the answer.

Moving on to social influence and impact on stress. Let’s look at the ability and motivation.
Let’s start with motivation because it is so closely connected to what we were just talking about. Have you ever found yourself in a one-up misery party? You know, where you are like, “I am so tired, I woke up at 4 am this morning” and your co-worker is like “Lucky you, I was up with the baby at 3.” and then someone else says “You got up at 3? I didn’t get to bed till 3 And had to wake up at 5.” You get the idea. Sometimes we find ourselves in social circles that are conversations where the cool kids seem the most miserable. Um, why are we racing to the bottom? What’s in that for the winner? That’s not a game I want to play and I hope you don’t either. Be motivated by talking with and being around people that take care of their emotional, and mental well being. Choose the friends that choose joy. Not stress.

On the other side, it is so good to have a solid social network that you can express when you genuinely need help. Whether it’s just prayer or someone to take your kids for a couple of hours so you can decompress or even just to vent to when you need to verbally vomit.

I will admit it. I am a verbal processor. I need to speak things in order to work them out. This last month coming off with so much stress, I had to get my best friend a gift. She had to listen to me vent multiple times a day, every day. I listen for her when she needs it. God bless my poor husband who had to pick up more than his fair share of the slack around the house, held me when I cried from exhaustion, and listened to me when I was angry. We need these people. You need these people. Remember, I said that this was to help you be more proactive? Drops in the Bucket (another good career book by the way). When you are not overwhelmed by stress, seek out others around you that you can care for. These relationships are not just about what we get from them, but what we give to them. So when you don’t need to take, give wildly.

Ok, now we are on to the structure. If you have listened for some time at all, you know I love structure. And this is such a strong piece to everything. I think we overestimate how our environment and the things outside of us can influence the inside of us. This is a huge part of the weekly success planning course. Do you want to read your bible in the morning? Where is your bible? Not in a place you can find it in the morning without waking people up? Guess who is going to have a hard time building that habit? Yep, you. Now put your Bible proactively by the coffee maker? You have built a structure of success. Now you will remember (that’s your ability) and you will be motivated. I mean how nice does it sound to sit down with your hot cup of coffee and read the word of God? Pretty good.

So how does this relate to stress? Well, ask yourself this one question. What about your environment stresses you out? It might be a mess, it might be seeing too many things and that overwhelms you. It could be color, yes, too many bright colors can stress out some people. It might be darkness it could be brightness. It’s a very personal thing. I think the most common is a messy environment. I think because it plays into the things we know we need to do and are not doing them, or guilt or whatever.

Once you have figured out what in your physical space stresses you out, do the opposite and set up systems so that you can keep that one thing taken care of. Again, it’s about being proactive.

Let me give you an example. For me, it’s a clean floor. When the floor is dirty, it contributes to my stress. I like a clean floor. It sounds weird, but when the floor is clean I think I can deal with more things coming my way. When the floor is dirty, when things get stressful, I have to clean the floor. I just have to. So, I have systems in place to keep the floor clean. Picking up the floor is part of my nightly routine and the floor gets vacuumed multiple times a week to keep it clean.

Another example, I once had a boss that could not handle a messy desk. He was really great at his job when he was anywhere else, except his office. His desk was always a mess. People would come in and lay things on his desk that needed his attention. It wasn’t good. One time in a one on one, he was commenting on his desk and how it stressed him out. All I said is “Maybe you should tell them not to do that and come up with another system.” It was a light bulb moment. Right away, he made the change, came up with a different system, and his stress level went way down.

Like I said before, stress is going to come. Like it or not. But we can choose to do something proactively to help us cope. I am so excited for next week’s episode as we dive further into the topic of stress. Catch it inside the Your Life Rocks Life Balance app.

If you found value in this week’s episode, would you do me a favor and share it with someone? Take a screenshot and share it on social media or even just mention the show or the app to a friend. It means the world to me and helps spread the message that it’s time to redefine what balance is and acknowledge that it is possible because all things are possible through Christ Jesus.

I’ll catch you next week and until then, keep building a life that rocks.

How cool is this? The Your life rocks life balance app is now available! hurry and make balancing life a little more easy with our very own official app. Free to download!