Stress is actually good for us in small amounts. It gives us energy and focus. It is good to be challenged. If we had absolutely no stress in our lives think how bored we would be. Too much stress is not good, however. We need balance.
How to get that balance when life is overwhelming us?
Meditate on a serene image or the word peace
Move your body!
Sip on a glass of wine and focus on something you enjoy
Get silly, crazy with your kids: jump around and tickle them, make up goofy stories, etc.