Stress-Anxiety & How To Cope

Holidays seem to cause people more stress.

Maybe they are missing a loved one.

Maybe they are working and going to school.

Maybe they are trying to stretch their dollar to pay bills and find a way to buy gifts.

Maybe they already suffer from depression and holidays just add to that depression.

Maybe they suffer from alcohol or drug addiction or food addiction and all the parties whether it’s a work party family gathering often unfortunately includes alcohol and food and lately drugs.

Or all of the above.

It seems today so many people young and old lack good coping skills.

Learning how to cope properly can go a long way for your everyday health. Let’s face it Stress is a health killer.

And it can lead to addiction if your trying to “escape” all the stress and anxiety but medicating whether it’s by food, alcohol, drugs won’t help it will in fact make things worse .

Here, are some of the the best and worst ways to de-stress right now.

And don’t be afraid to reach out to someone and talk about it. A qualified professional counselor or pastor or social worker can help.

BEST WAYS GET SOME FRESH AIR

Research shows that the vitamin D boost from sunlight may elevate your levels of feel-good serotonin. And, taking in the sights, sounds, and smells around you redirects your focus from your worries.

GET OUT OF YOUR HEAD

Do you ever get that never-ending loop of negative thoughts and what-ifs playing in your head?

That’s because stress likes to mess with your mind. A surefire and fun way to get out of your head is to engage in activities that put the focus on your hands or body (think kneading bread, sketching a picture, knitting a scarf, find a craft . As your hands and fingers begin to fall into those familiar rhythmic moves, it sends a signal to your brain that immediately relaxes you and makes you feel grounded.

So immerse yourself in a creative, engaging activity and get ready to press the mute button.

CONNECT TO YOUR SPIRITUAL SIDE

For many centuries, religious groups and native tribes worldwide have used prayer beads to guide their spiritual practice, and research shows that spirituality boosts mood

Buy a set of prayer beads or make your own, and then create a positive affirmation or mantra that resonates with you.

It’s not about religion it’s spiritual mindfulness

Then, next time stress hits, repeat your affirmation as you work your way around and touch each bead.

The more you go around, the more you’ll experience a sense of power and detachment from the source of anxiety as your brain switches into a meditative cadence.

Some suggestions

It’s not who you are that holds you back, it’s who you think you’re not.

We make a living by what we get, we make a life by what we.

VISUALIZE CALM

Find a quiet space, close your eyes, focus your breathing, and transport yourself to your happy place for a few minutes each day. Research from the University of California, Los Angeles shows your body actually produces less of the stress hormone cortisol when engaging in guided imagery

There are plenty of books and articles written on the subject if you need help getting started, but the most important thing is to find a comforting and calming image that works for you (a beautiful blue ocean might be totally relaxing to one person, but a nightmare for someone who’s afraid of water).

Find a beautiful nature picture that makes you happy and use it.

TAKE A BATH

Water has an innate soothing effect on the mind and body since it connects us back to our time in the womb,

Schedule a regular time to soak in the tub. Further your bliss by pairing your bath with scented bath beads.

Pick a scent that smells best to you or go for lavender or jasmine, both of which possess stress-reducing properties.

Just 5-10 minutes can help your stress.

MY FAVORITE EXPRESS YOUR GRATITUDE

Studies have revealed the positive effects of expressing gratitude. While studying brain activity, National Institutes of Health researchers found subjects who showed more gratitude had higher levels of activity in the hypothalamus, a part of the brain that has a huge influence on our stress levels.

Plus, gratefulness also activated the regions associated with dopamine, one of those feel-good neurotransmitters. To reap these stress-reducing benefits, write down your feelings of gratitude daily in a journal, or by sending little notes to friends or family letting them know how much you appreciate them. I do try to tell my family I love you and I’m grateful every day.

EXERCISE

Exercise may be the healthiest stress buster : it revs your body’s production of feel-good endorphins, it can help regulate your sleep, lowers the symptoms associated with mild depression, boosts your energy, and helps you remain calmer and more focused, all of which can go a long way toward stress management. While it’s easy to let a daily exercise routine slide when you’re overwhelmed, take steps to incorporate it daily.

WORST THINGS YOU CAN DO : DRINKING, SMOKING, DRUGS AND OTHER VICES

Drowning your stress in a bottle of wine or a pack of cigarettes or a pill or a line might seem to bring a release in the moment, but turning to unhealthy vices like drinking, drugs, smoking, or even too much caffeine only sets you up to stress out more once the high wears off. And will lead to addiction and possibly death.

Since these habits tend to increase the Negative Impact stress is already having on your body (raising your blood pressure, making you jittery, moody, feeling lost, keeping you awake at night to name just a few), you enter into a vicious cycle of feeling more stressed out and then returning to the vice over and over.

DONT HIBERNATE

The thought of hiding away under the covers sounds pretty great when there’s so much to deal with beyond your bedroom door, but sleeping too much isn’t the answer. Studies show that the more you sleep, the more tired you actually feel.

Increased lethargy is only going to make it that much harder for you to focus and much less likely to deal with the stressors at hand.

Plus, studies that have shown an association between chronic oversleeping and diabetes, heart disease, weight gain, and even higher rates of death (though it’s unclear if too much sleep causes these problems).

Adding health problems to your already heavy load is only going to exacerbate your stress levels.

DONT DWELL ON THE NEGATIVE

If you make a mistake at work, or school or home do you assume you’re going to get fired? Do you think you’re going to fail?

Have a fight with your spouse or significant other and worry the relationship may be over?

It’s not uncommon to jump to worst-case scenarios when dealing with an upsetting issue, but blowing things out of proportion only intensifies your stressed. When we’re feeling stressed it’s very easy to view ourselves in a negative light, . Way to soften your inner chatter, goes to negative focus on positive I suggest looking at things from a different perspective. Talk to yourself as if you were offering advice to your best friend and odds are you’ll have much more compassionate and positive things to say.

DONT EAT YOUR FEELINGS

Like alcohol or drugs, food often becomes a crutch when coping with difficult times. I’ve been guilty of this.

Soothing your pain with a high-calorie, high-sugar, or high-fat comfort foods feels good at first, but it can quickly spiral out of control when your mind and body begin to associate negative emotions with eating.

At the first sign of stress, anger, or sadness you’ll instinctively reach for food rather than dealing with the feelings at hand.

Overeating can cause weight gain and make you feel worse about yourself.

DONT IGNORE THE PROBLEM

While it’s normal to take a mental time out once in a while to watch a funny movie or meet a friend for lunch, consistently avoiding the stress in your life is counterproductive.

When you evade your problems, you don’t allow yourself to process or understand what you’re dealing with.

The more you ignore something whether it’s a concrete problem like paying off bills or an emotional one like the fear of losing a job the greater it’s going to get.

Your best bet is to reach out for help and make a plan of action that will eventually diminish your problems and alleviate your stress.

Talk to a counselor , a pastor, a family member.

There is nothing to be ashamed of or embarrassed by in asking for help. We don’t judge you.

We are humans and we make mistakes and we get stressed and we feel stuck sometimes.

But we’re not stuck.

Please reach out to a professional if you feel the stress in your life is overwhelming.

And if no one has said it to you today.

Your a wonderful person who is going through a hard time. You can and will get through this. Believe in yourself. Like I believe in you.

God Bless You.

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