THE BLOG

Making Space

25/09/2017 17:19 BST | Updated 25/09/2017 17:20 BST

When I returned from my summer holiday a couple of weeks ago, like many others, I felt relaxed and refreshed - but already the usual stresses are threatening to kick in!

With today's fast pace of life and increased demands on our time, it's important to "make space" and find perspective, keep up our energy levels and improve our stamina. Keeping a close eye on our wellbeing - from exercising more, getting fresh air and eating healthier, to setting personal and work goals - helps to create more "head space" so that you can enjoy that post-holiday energy boost all year round.

Let go and focus on the things that really matter - A need to control often comes from the fear of something going wrong. Try questioning the validity of this fear - if you let go, will the consequences really be all that bad? If the answer is no, then let it go and stop worrying about the "what ifs". Figure out what are the most important tasks at hand and what things you can influence. Tidy-up your list of "must-dos" - it is vital that we focus on the right things and do them better.

Recognise the positives - As you go about your day, make sure you notice and take advantage of the things in life that bring you happiness. Whether it's the little things like taking a walk in the park or listening to music from a favourite artist, or the bigger things that you are grateful to have in your life - your health, family and friends. Making space in your thoughts to be grateful for the positives has huge power and provides renewed perspective, particularly when faced with the stresses and challenges of daily life.

Give your mind a break - You can meditate in a multitude of ways - through guided meditation sessions, yoga classes or mindfulness apps. Taking the time to clear our minds, relax and be still, helps calm the mind and train it to become more peaceful. Personally, meditation helps me to better cope with the stresses of modern living by being more open to a particular situation, giving it my full attention, and better managing my reactions.

Disconnect - Taking time off to step back, take stock and gain new perspective can be incredibly good for the soul. Time away from emails, phone calls and social media has a positive effect on one's state of mind. By switching off, you are escaping the constant "chatter", giving yourself permission to be "unavailable" even if for only a short period of time, and allowing your mind time to rest and your batteries to recharge.

So my advice is to find a handful of ways that have both a calming and an energising effect. Yes, life can be overwhelming - but only if you let it. Try to let go of your impulse to be in control of everything, and enjoy the small things in life. By taking time out of your busy day to do some yoga, or listen to some music, you can help build your resilience to external stresses, allowing clarity of thought and a clear headspace for creativity and decision-making.

Neeha Khurana is International head of Talent at Bank of America Merrill Lynch