What to do in a stressful situation
The following is a way to put stress reducing principles into practice when you encounter a stressful situation. Be a “HOPE-COP.” Memorize the acronym and the words it represents. Hope + Others + Prioritize + Endgame –(breathe) + control + obey + pray.
The “word” hope in itself reminds us that there is more in this world than just us. Each element of the word hope is to get our eyes off of ourselves. The word “cop” reminds us that there is a higher authority in this world and we need to respond with submission and recognition of God and His goodness.
Hope. Remind yourself of the hope we have in Christ. What is the worst that man or this world can do to us? In relation to the love of God and eternity, things of this world are mighty small.
Others. Involve other people. Humble yourself and let others come alongside you and share your burden. Ask others to pray. Ask others for their wisdom on how to solve the problem.
Prioritize. Be sure to place the current stressor in a list. Compare the problem to other possible scenarios. Think about your general situation compared to others in the world.
End-game. Weigh the possible outcomes and alternatives. Look for solutions. Keep your eyes open for how you can make lemonade out of lemons.
– Even the dash is useful. Take a deep breath and relax.
Control. Control your emotions. Don’t let the situation let you become angry. Don’t become bitter. Believe the best in people. Love other people. Put others above your self.
Obey. Think of God’s commands. How would God want you to respond in this situation? Look for ways to be loving. Don’t punish others for the inconvenience. Above all else, be forgiving and gracious.
Pray. Take a moment to pray and ask God for His help. Be reminded of His sovereignty and His Providence.