By Brittany Wonnell, RD
Stress is the body’s way of responding to a demand or a threat, which causes your nervous system to release stress hormones into your body. Some stress is healthy, but other stress is not. Everyone at some point in his or her life will have to deal with stress and the repercussions that follow. Learning stress-reduction techniques and understanding your body will help you live a healthier life.
First, it’s important to recognize the physical signs that you’re stressed. Difficulty sleeping, increased alcohol usage, being easily angered, feeling depressed and having low energy are all signs of being stressed.
After identifying your stress, try thinking about what’s causing your stress. Set priorities to help you decide what must be done now and what can wait. Saying “no” can also assist you when many stress-inducing priorities.
Avoid dwelling on problems, and know what you physically can or can’t do about certain stressors. Exercising regularly can also help boost your mood by releasing endorphins. Make sure you schedule regular times for healthy, relaxing activities as well. Some activities could be dinner with friends, phone conversations with family members, meditation, yoga or mindful walking.
Remember to stay in touch with people who provide positive support. Also, seek a qualified mental health provider if you feel overwhelmed or have trouble coping with the stress in your life. Getting proper healthcare for existing or new problems can improve your health and everyday well-being and, ultimately, save your life.