Stress is an unavoidable part of the human experience, but learning how to manage our stress can ensure that we don’t get swept away in a current of anxiety on a regular basis. In medical circles, stress has been linked to negative physical conditions such as high blood pressure, increased heart rate, and high blood sugar levels, as well as mental health issues such as anger, depression, and anxiety. In short, managing our stress is the sort of critical life skill that only gets more necessary over time.
Stress can feel overwhelming when you’re in the thick of it, trying to juggle too many things at work or attempting to care for others while disregarding your own needs. Which is why it is so important to have reminders that this, too, shall pass, and that whatever is worrying you is temporary, while your own resilience and fortitude are what stay. In fact, one major way to combat stress is to choose not to engage with it. As motivational speaker Mark Black said, “Sometimes the most productive thing you can do is relax.” Here, we’ve rounded up 15 other quotes that may be helpful to refer to in times of tension and strain, offering up reassurances that no matter how stressful a moment is, the next may just bring calm and certitude.
Almost everything will work again if you unplug it for a few minutes, including you.
— Anne Lamott, writer
The key is not to prioritize what’s on your schedule, but to schedule your priorities.
— Stephen Covey, author
Our anxiety does not come from thinking about the future, but from wanting to control it.
— Kahlil Gibran, writer
When one door closes, another door opens; but we so often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door, that we do not see the ones which open for us.
— Alexander Graham Bell
A good way to overcome stress is to help others out of theirs.
— Dada J. P. Vaswani, Indian spiritual leader
Someone I loved once gave me a box full of darkness. It took me years to understand that this too, was a gift.
— Mary Oliver, poet
All the suffering, stress, and addiction comes from not realizing you already are what you are looking for.
— Jon Kabat-Zinn, founder of MBSR (mindfulness-based stress reduction)
Breathe. Let go. And remind yourself that this very moment is the only one you know you have for sure.
— Oprah Winfrey
Rule number one is, don’t sweat the small stuff. Rule number two is, it’s all small stuff.
— Robert Eliot, writer
I think that we have to realize that times of stress are also times that are signals for growth, and if we use adversity properly, we can grow through adversity.
— Rabbi Dr. Abraham Twerski
In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity.
— Albert Einstein
These mountains that you are carrying, you were only supposed to climb.
— Najwa Zebian, writer and activist
Suffering becomes beautiful when anyone bears great calamities with cheerfulness. Not through insensibility but through greatness of mind.
Feelings come and go like clouds in a windy sky. Conscious breathing is my anchor.
— Thích Nhất Hạnh, Buddhist monk
If you want to conquer the anxiety of life, live in the moment, live in the breath.
— Amit Ray, spiritual teacher
Photo credit: Nazaruk Nazar/ Shutterstock