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Stress Management Techniques

“Stress is nothing more than a socially acceptable form of mental illness.”
~Richard Carlson

“I don’t care!!” She yells out at the girl behind the counter. It’s always uncomfortable when you walk into a situation where two people are arguing. You know nothing about what’s going on. I wanted to get something in the store, but I am at odds with the shouting. I decide to come back later and leave. No one likes to be around stress. Though, some people enjoy watching confrontation just to see what will happen.

I always choose to take care of my well being. Recent deaths and health issues around town is a sure sign that stress is disrupting the peace. There are times when we all can experience stress in our lives. Ongoing stress can have negative effects on your health and can lead to depression and other diseases. That’s why it’s a good idea to manage your stress level everyday. Are you feeling anxious, not sleeping well? Always tired, having mood swings? Having headaches, can’t seem to concentrate? You might be feeling the effects of stress. When you feel stress coming on its time to slow down and take a hard look at ways to get your peace back. Below are some tools you can use to handle stress that show up in your life:

Catch it early
Know your signs and symptoms of stress; such as headache, stomach discomfort, tense muscles and restless sleep may be early indicators of too much stress. When you feel stress coming on, don’t wait! Put your stress management techniques into practice right away.

Get enough sleep
Something as simple as getting to bed at a decent hour is a great start. Recognize how much sleep you need to function well. Stress can cause a lack of sleep. Turn the TV off early and relax your mind. Caffeine and alcohol before bed are among the most common causes of insomnia. If you have not slept the whole night before consider consulting a doctor for medication to help you sleep.

Distract yourself Do something fun. Laugh. It reduces the flow of stress hormones. Watch a feel good movie. Phone a friend that knows how to make you laugh. Take a ten-minute nap. Napping has been associated with increased energy, motivation, alertness, and concentration. Taking a break is not being lazy! You’re refreshing your mind. You’re relieving stress. Enjoy a good hobby for a few hours.

Confront the cause of stress
Take time away from the problem to think it over. Sometimes by giving the problem distance a solution shows up before you do anything. Identify the source of the problem and if you can break it into smaller challenges you can handle. Consider whom you can get to help you in this situation.

Exercise
Exercise is one of the best ways to relieve stress. The more stressed you are, the greater the amount of exercise you need. When you exercise, mood-elevating endorphins are released into the blood stream. Break a sweat. You’ll feel great. Not only will it clear your head. In addition, exercise helps you sleep better.

Think the best
Believe good things are going to happen. You will attract good things. Of course, bad things happen to everyone, but keep looking for the good. You usually find what you look for. Be grateful for the good things in your life. The more you focus on what’s good the more good you will see in your life

Get help for issues out of control
When your stressors are getting out of control, seek help, research the internet, look for books on the subject, talk to a counselor, pastor, ask a trusted friend for help. If all else fails, get professional help. Getting help isn’t a sign of weakness. It takes strength to admit you need help and it shows how responsible you are.

Excerpt from “Secrets To Life Book” by Chris Emmanuel
Book available at Chris Emmanuel Art Gallery (Sunbreeze Hotel) and Pages Book Store

– by Chris Emmanuel, Columnist

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