We all have unpleasant conditions in our lives that cause us stress. We may try to ignore these situations, but they still affect us. If the condition could be eliminated, it is called a toleration. In this first of a 5-Part Series on Reducing Stress, I will discuss how to eliminate your tolerations to create a distraction-free life. (This stress reduction concept was developed by Coach U, Inc., www.CoachU.com.)
What is a toleration? It’s the rug that you trip over every day on the way out the door, the room you cringe as you walk by because it needs to be painted, the nail biting habit you know you should stop, but just don’t.
“A toleration is something that is put up with or endured; it is a burden and eats up time, money, and mental space,” The Coach U Personal and Corporate Coach Training Handbook, By Coach U, Inc.
Other examples of tolerations include:
- A desk stacked with paper
- A co-worker who spends all day complaining
- Limited trunk space in your car because it’s filled with miscellaneous gear
- Not exercising when you know you should
Can tolerations be eliminated? YES!!! The desk full of paper can be organized, you can stop listening to your co-worker complain, you can clean out your trunk, and you can find ways to get yourself to work out.
It is important to note that one person’s toleration is another person’s way of life. A messy desk may bother me and not bother you in the least. Basically, it’s a toleration for you if it creates frustration, drains your energy, or distracts you from what is really important.
What are the benefits of eliminating your tolerations:
- Reduced frustration and anxiety
- More energy
- An un-cluttered perception of life and the beauty in it
- More freedom
People who clear up tolerations often find that it opens up space for their creativity and intuition. Tara Gupta, Wellness Coach, “As soon as I got rid of just a few tolerations I had a feeling of openness and space.”
Just creating awareness of your tolerations can start to melt them away.
The first step is to make a Tolerations List. Susan Turner, Life Coach talked about her experience in identifying her tolerations: “the biggest thing was just writing down my tolerations and putting the message out there that I wanted to rid my life of them. Once I did that, some of my tolerations started to disappear.”
When making your Tolerations List, try to shoot for at least 30 tolerations. Areas of your life to examine for tolerations include:
- Work: environment, co-workers, equipment, procedures, tasks, your boss
- Other People: your friends, your neighbors, your spouse, your children, relatives, clergy, your doctor
- Yourself: self criticism, unproductive behaviors, your appearance, your health
- Your Home Environment: your house, your car, your neighborhood
Once you’ve made your list, look for the tolerations that will be easy to eliminate. Or make a plan to eliminate your three biggest tolerations. You will be amazed to find that your stress level will drop just be eliminating a few of your tolerations.
Look for Part 2 of this series on reducing your stress in which I will discuss more ways to eliminate your tolerations so that you can become a toleration free zone.
** The Reduce Stress by Eliminating Your Tolerations is a recording of a presentation on
How to Eliminate What You’re Tolerating in Life. It is approximately 30 minutes in length.
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