Stress Management Programs
Key to Total Wellness

Planning for Wellness with
Good Stress Management Programs

Have you ever developed any stress management programs? When was the last time that you sat down and wrote out a detailed plan for something you wanted to get done? Maybe it was a shopping list, a schedule, a "To Do" list or some other organizational tool to help you keep things on track. For many people, the last comprehensive plan they developed was their wedding plan. The use of planning in today’s society is weak at best.

The majority of people don’t even write anything down when they decide to start something as big as a business. According to Michael Gerber of the E-Myth (The Entrepreneurial Myth), most new businesses start with no plan at all, which is why 96% of businesses fail within the first 10 years. Gerber says that most new businesses start because of an entrepreneurial seizure. The would-be business owner just wakes up one day; feeling fed up about something in his or her life, and decides to start a business. It’s no wonder the failure rate of new business start-ups is so high.

There is much similarity between business start-ups and fledgling wellness efforts. Every day, people decide they will try to get back their health, in one way or another. She goes on a diet; he joins a gym; they buy some vitamins; and so on. As with most business start-ups, almost all wellness efforts fail due to lack of planning. The only people who succeed long term in achieving and maintaining wellness are those that engage in a detailed and comprehensive planning process.

Becoming obese or sick with chronic degenerative disease didn’t just happen overnight, and it took years of abuse of our bodies. Getting well is going to take extremely consistent and focused stress management programs in which you deal all four of the major fields of stress. Thankfully, there are excellent planning tools available for us to utilize.

When you design stress management programs to address your wellness issues, they should be in writing. You must set up some system to help you track your plan and the progress you make. An excellent tool for this process is a simple three-ring binder with some dividers in it. Once you have that binder set up, you can get to work on developing your stress management programs.

Factors to Consider

There are many factors to consider as you develop your wellness plan. These include:

  1. What do you want the result of the wellness effort to be? Imagine what total wellness would look like for you? Put some boundaries around your vision.
  2. What specific activities are needed to get to that result? In what order do these activities need to be completed? What resources do you need to be able to do the activities? How long will each activity take to complete? How will you fit the activities into your schedule?
  3. How much do the activities cost? How will you adjust your budget to accommodate the activities? If the activities are expensive, how will you raise the money you need? How will you track the costs of the activities?
  4. What level of quality are you willing to accept as you work through these activities? What are the minimum standards that you will accept? How will you ensure your standards are met?
  5. Who do you need to be on your wellness team? Do you need professionals or experts involved? Does anyone need to be recruited or trained? How will you do the training and recruiting of your wellness team?
  6. How will you communicate with your wellness team? What information will be shared with whom? When will the information be shared? How will it be shared? What information will not be shared?
  7. What are the barriers you will likely face once you being to act on your wellness plan? How big are these barriers? Can these barriers be conquered? How will you overcome the barriers? Who can help you overcome the barriers?
  8. Now that you know what tools and resources you need to implement your plan, how will you access these tools and resources and manage them?
  9. Who else is affected by this plan? Who are the stakeholders in your success or failure? Maybe family members or co-workers will be impacted. It is a good idea to get a handle on all this before you start and determine how each of these people will consulted or debriefed about your plan.
  10. How are you going to tie all the pieces together. How will you integrate everything. It is a good idea to take a look at the big picture of how all the pieces fit together before you start. That way you be sure there is nothing you have missed.

If you could take the time to create a plan that considers all of these factors then you will have a good chance of making sure that your wellness effort actually sticks.

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