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STRESS–REALISTIC WAYS TO DEAL
August 7, 2008, 8:58 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

Stress–ways to deal that might actually work–taken from DG newsletter that took it from http://www.stress.org

Contemplating and agonizing over a situation continues to heighten stress levels.  Acting on the stress will help address the problem providing you with ownership of the issues and a sense of power to manage the situation.  Acting may also take the form of research as learning more about an issue provides additional tools and knowledge to address the situation. 

  • Imagine Positively. Often our worrying stems from imagining and visualizing negative situations. Instead shift the negative images to positive images. For example, if you are worried about a friend and the potential of poor test results, imagine your friend receiving positive news and the celebration you will plan for her.
  • Relax. Meditation and yoga enable you to focus on the present instead of focusing on the items that cause worrying.
  • Keep a Worry Journal. Frequently many of our worries never come to fruition and instead live in our imaginations. By keeping a journal of your worries you can review these stressors and notice how many do not actually happen.
  • Be Active. Physical activity reduces stress hormones, increases the production of endorphins which enhance your mood, and relieves muscle tension.
  • Decrease Caffeine Intake. Caffeine increases feelings of anxiousness serving to heighten your stress.
  • Reduce News Intake. Media often reports negative stories that may lead to anxiety. Consider decreasing your intake of negative news.
  • Touch. Whether we pet our cat, hold hands with someone, or give hugs, touch may shrink stress by reducing the production of cortisol, a stress hormone. Giving touch, as opposed to receiving touch, reduces stress levels more significantly. Touch therapies such as Reiki, reflexology, massages, or chiropractic care also have positive effects.
  • Find a Listener. Individuals, who are able to share their worries with another individual who actively listens, find their stress levels decrease. When identifying an individual to be your “listener” consider the following suggestions associated with successful listening: (1) reduce internal chatter enabling you to stay more focused on the other person, (2) ask open-ended questions to enable the other person to share more deeply and thoroughly, (3) avoid interrupting as it sends a message to the other person that what you have to say is more important, (4) do not share your opinion unless asked, and (5) shy away from sharing your story as it minimizes the experience of the other person.
  • Be with Nature. Sitting outside, taking a walk in a wooded park or along the water, and other outside pastimes reduces heart-rates, helping to reduce low-level stress. Note: watching nature television shows have not been proven to have the same effect.
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