Seven Steps of Stress Mastery
Updated: Jul 27
as created by Bill Cortright
Taking charge of our lives starts with the body. The healthy lifestyle plan is designed to take charge of the stress response and turn off stress. Diet and Exercise are the first two steps in Stress Mastery.
Mastering stress will change your quality of life. It is important to grow in your understanding of the Mind/Body and Body/Mind connection. The body always supports the mind. The body will feel and do what you tell it to feel and do. Diet and exercise are very important, but so are your thoughts.
Change your thoughts and change your life. Ultimately creating the Head-Heart-Hand connection. This is essential to creating a life of high performance, focus and living in the Green Zone. To this end, the Seven Steps to Stress Mastery have been developed by Bill Cortright. These seven steps have changed the lives of thousands of people. They will work for you, too.
Creating good practices will help to change your life. You can begin to manage the stress response through diet and exercise for your physiology…
Step One: Diet
Stress Mastery begins with the management of the physiological response to stress and this is done through diet. The purpose of diet is to manage the physical Stress Response and it is this management that allows our nervous system to leave the Red Zone and work in the Green Zone which increases focus and performance.
There is no one diet that works for everyone. The best way to see how your current diet is working for you is through bloodwork.
Step Two: Exercise
Step Two is the management of the body and its stress response creating the body-mind connection. Science has proven that exercise overrides our genes and has the ability to change our brain chemistry, allowing us to re-wire our brains to be in a state of flow and focus.
Step Three: Name the Ego
Step three is the beginning of the personal development and reprogramming. All our habits, beliefs, and actions come from the subconscious mind. The programs in your cage are controlled by this voice in your head which is the Ego. When we name the Ego, we begin the process of detachment from negative programming. Creating this awareness allows us to perform even when the voice is attempting to sabotage our efforts.
You are not your ego. Naming it helps us become aware of the constant negative chatter. We are designed not to change. We are designed to stay locked in the comfort zone, like a cage. The ego has one job and that is to stop you from changing.
Understanding that that critical voice in my head wasn’t me, was the beginning of my transformation.
Step Four: Let Go Technique
Step four teaches us the art of reprogramming our habits and the Tribalization Process. When we master and begin to let go of our past programming, we let go of the programs that caused lack of focus and performance. The Let Go Technique releases us from past failures.
I have found that we are constantly thinking about yesterday or tomorrow. What happened last time; or what may happen next is a complete waste of time and energy. It keeps us stuck. This is the ego, not wanting us to change. Allowing ourselves to let go of the past creates a better future. There is no room for the past in the future.
Step Five: Green Focus Power Hour
Step five is about re-programming our subconscious mind, thus programming our life with habits that are geared for our Growth. In this step you set the programs and habits that support you in reaching your goals. It is step five that sets the day in the Green zone which creates connection of Head-Heart-Hand.
Step Six: Meditation
Step six of Stress Mastery is designed to build the concentration muscle. It is about using simple techniques that increase the brains capacity to work without getting overwhelmed. This ability to concentrate increases performance and focus. Meditation is one of the best performance tools that anyone wishing to increase performance could use.
Step Seven: Finding the NOW
Step Seven is where we find Stress Mastery. When we find the Now, we are Focused and act from a responsive state, opposed to the reactive state of stress. In this state, the outer circumstances of our lives no longer affect our inner being. Bottom-line…No Stress!
Several years ago, I made a goal, to live in peace. I lived nearly 60 years in fight, force, and strife. Oh my gosh I was sick of stress. I have spent four years practicing these Seven Steps of Stress Mastery and they have literally transformed my life. No, I am not Wayne Dyer, Eckhart Tolle or the Dalai Lama. But my life is so much more peaceful than it was.
Finding the now is being able to slow down enough to relax in the present moment. You don’t have to react when the world is spinning. Awareness is key. The ego tries to speed everything up and create stories about what's going to happen and how terrible everything is going to be. If you can be still for a moment, take a deep breath, connect to your heart, and you will see almost every time, that right NOW everything is OK. At this moment, you are OK. The outside reality can match your inside reality. And you can find peace in the moment. My practice… I see the ego trying to take over. I sit still, take a deep breath, and say “Beeeeee Stillllllll”. I connect to the Holy Spirit. In that moment, I can feel my head connect to my heart. Yes, with practice even in the midst of strife…. It works.
What is Next…?
Read the Pause Plan book by Bill Cortright
The focus of this book has been on the Body – Diet and Exercise. This is where you work and master the Pause-Plan Lifestyle System. The next three steps that follow (Naming the Ego, Letting Go Technique and Green Focus Power Hour) are where you will work on creating a new mind. Finally, the last two steps (Meditation and Finding the NOW) are focused on Spirit. Each of these are a natural progression, leading to connection of Body, Mind and Spirit.
The next steps 3, 4 and 5 are in the book “The Illusion of Stress” and are taught in the specialized coaching that is built around Stress Mastery called “Shift Coaching.” Also, on the Stress Mastery Podcast, where we touch on all different kinds of subjects and how they tie into Stress Mastery.
*I am a Stress Mastery Shift Coach and I am honored to reach thousands of people on the Saturday episode of the Stress Mastery Podcast.
*If you are interested in seeing how much I have been able to shift my life, please read my book, Finally! Becoming Who You Were Always Meant to Be.