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61 ~ SELF-CONTRACT FOR MANAGING STRESS Beginning with the least distressing situation, develop a plan of action for handling the situation. You might use deep breathing when you are in the situation. Or you might work on relaxing the muscles directly while thinking, "Relax." Then write a self-contract for practicing relaxing while in the situation. Remember to acknowledge your successes often. When you can handle the mildest situation and remain relaxed, move to the next situation on the list. I will (plan for relaxing) _ When I have done this I will (reward from Want List) _ This contract will be in effect until (duty or term of contract) _ Date Signature _ Summary of Stress Management When you know that you can handle stressful situations, you feel more powerful. Not only will you protect your health, but you are likely to perform better and get more "wins." The increased "wins" and feelings of control help to buffer you against burnout situations at work.