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3 Things You Say That Increase Your Stress

3 Things You Say That Increase Your Stress

The words you use have the power to build up or tear down the people you are dealing with, or in the case of your thoughts, they can pick you up or drag you down. When it comes to the processes ticking over in your own thoughts, I have noticed that there are 3 things that people commonly say that increase their stress and hold them back.

“I know”

Have you ever heard or read something and said to yourself “yeah I know that”, then disregarded the information? You are likely missing out on learnings you really need. A better question to ask is “am I doing this?”  or “how can I do this better?”  There is a big difference between knowing and implementing.  Would you agree? Often you need to see the same information in many different ways before you start using it.


The word should is one of the most disempowering words you can use. Usually used to beat yourself up for not doing something (e.g., “I really should have done that”), or to convince yourself to do something you really do not want to do (e.g., “I should do that now”), the whole energy of the word is deflating. Do not even get me started about when someone says “You should do that”!! If this awful word does get under your radar try interchanging it with will if it is about something in the future or if it is about something you have not done, try saying could have instead.

“What if?”

When deciding whether or not to take action on an idea your brain often goes into an overload of “what if?” questions. The problem is that most of the questions are relating to the possibility of something going wrong, “what if I lose my money?”, “what if no-one likes it?”, “what if I get hurt?” When you feel these questions creeping in flip them on their head and ask “what if it does work?”, “what if it makes loads of money?”, “what if it changes people’s lives in an amazing way?” Change the focus to set an intention of a positive outcome. You can flip a situation quickly by asking better quality questions.


This article is an excerpt from the book “How To Be Resilient – The Blueprint For Getting Results When Things Don’t Go To Plan” by Stacey Copas.

Stacey Copas has used her life experience and personal philosophies to become a leading Keynote Speaker and Facilitator on Turning Adversity Into An Asset.  She has worked with large organisations such as Telstra, CSIRO and OZ Minerals, helping their leaders be their best in challenging times. Stacey has also been featured in national media including ABC, Financial Review and The Australian for her insights on resilience in the workplace.

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