1. Get up 15 minutes earlier in the
morning. Extra time helps make
mishaps less stressful.
2. Prepare for the morning the evening
before. Set the breakfast table. Make
lunches. Put out the clothes you plan
3. Don’t rely on your memory. Write down
appointment times, such as when to pick
up the laundry, when library books are due.
(“ e palest ink is better than the most
retentive memory.”—Chinese Proverb)
4. Do nothing you have to lie about later.
5. Make copies of all keys. Bury a house
key in a secret spot in the garden. Carry
a duplicate car key in your wallet, apart
from your key ring.
6. Practice preventive maintenance. Your
car, appliances, home, and relationships
will be less likely to break down “at the
worst possible moment.”
7. Be prepared to wait. A paperback book
or MP3 player can make waiting in a
post o ce line almost pleasant.
8. Procrastination is stressful. Whatever
you want to do tomorrow, do today;
whatever you want to do today, do it now.
9. Plan ahead. Don’t let the gas tank get
below one-quarter full. Keep emergency
supplies of home staples. Don’t wait
until you’re down to your last bus token
or postage stamp to buy more.
10. Don’t put up with something that
doesn’t work right. If your alarm clock,
wallet, shoe laces, windshield wipers—
whatever—are a constant aggravation,
get them xed or buy new ones.
11. Allow 15 minutes of extra time to get
to appointments. Plan to arrive at an
airport at least one hour before domestic
12. Eliminate (or restrict) the amount of
ca eine in your diet.
13. Set up contingency plans, “just in
case.” (“If we get split up in the shopping
center, let’s meet here.”)
14. Relax your standards. e world will
not end if the grass doesn’t get mowed
15. Use Pollyanna-Power! For every one
thing that goes wrong, there are probably
10 or 50 or 100 blessings. Count ’em!
16. Be clear before you act. Ask questions.
Take a few moments to repeat back
instructions given to you. Don’t fall
prey to the old “the hurrieder I go, the
behinder I get” idea.
17. Say “No” to extra projects, invitations,
and social activities you don’t have
time or energy for. is takes practice,
self-respect, and a belief that everyone,
every day, needs quiet time to relax and
to be alone.
18. Turn o or unplug your phone. Take a
long bath, meditate, sleep, or read without
interruption. Drum up the courage to
temporarily disconnect. ( e possibility
of there being a terrible emergency in
the next hour or so is almost nil.)
19. Turn “needs” into preferences. Our basic
physical needs are food, water, and keeping
warm. Everything else is a preference.
Don’t get attached to preferences.
20. Simplify, simplify, simplify.
21. Make friends with non-worriers.
e behavior of chronic worrywarts
22. Take frequent stretch breaks when
you’re sitting a lot.
23. If you can’t nd quiet at home, wear
24. Get enough sleep. Set your alarm for
25. Organize! A place for everything and
everything in its place. Losing things is
26. Monitor your body for stress signs. If
your stomach muscles are knotted and
your breathing is shallow, relax your
muscles and take some deep, slow breaths.
27. Write down your thoughts and feelings.
It can help you clarify ideas and give
you a renewed perspective.
28. Do this yoga exercise when you need
to relax: Inhale through your nose to the
count of eight. Pucker your lips and exhale
slowly to the count of 16. Concentrate
on the long sighing sound and feel the
tension dissolve. Repeat 10 times.
29. Visualize success before any experience
you fear. Take time to go over every
part of the event in your mind. Imagine
how great you will look, and how well
you will present yourself.
30. Take your mind o the task for a
while. If the stress of a deadline gets in
the way of doing a job, use diversion. You
will focus better when you return to it.
31. Talk out your problems with a friend.
It helps to relieve confusion.
32. Avoid people and places that don’t
t your personal needs and desires.
If you dislike politics, don’t spend time
with politically excited people.
33. Learn to live one day at a time.
34. Do something you really enjoy
35. Add an ounce of love to everything
36. Take a bath or shower to relieve tension.
37. Do a favor for someone every day.
38. Focus on understanding rather than
on being understood, on loving rather
than on being loved.
39. Look good to feel better.
40. Take more time between tasks to
relax. Schedule a realistic day.
41. Be exible. Some things are not worth
42. Stop negative self-talk: “I’m too old.”
Make it positive: “I’ve learned from life.”
43. Change your pace on weekends. If
your week was slow, be active. If you felt
nothing was accomplished during the
week, do a weekend project.
44. Pay attention to the details in front of
you. “Worry about the pennies, and the
dollars will take care of themselves.”
45. Do one thing at a time. When you are
working on one thing, don’t think about
everything else you have to do.
46. Allow time every day for privacy,
quiet, and thought.
47. Do unpleasant tasks early and enjoy
the rest of the day.
48. Delegate responsibility to capable
49. Take lunch breaks. Get away from
your work in body and in mind.
50. Count to 1,000 (not 10), before you
say something that could make matters
51. Forgive people and events. Accept that
we live in an imperfect world.
52. Have an optimistic view of the world.
Most people do the best they can.