Stress contributes to all of the leading causes of premature death including heart disease. Stress negatively impacts quality of life and plays a role in loss of muscle and bone strength, weight gain, and loss of sexual function. Each of us can look at periods in our lives when we have experienced unhealthy amounts of stress. For me, those times have included financial and workplace stress, the death of loved ones, serious family illnesses, the stress of being a caregiver, along with serious events that threaten our nation and world.
The television forever changed the way Americans viewed the Vietnam War. I have vivid memories of the graphic images of the fighting splashed across our television screen while I worried that my older brother might not make it back from Vietnam. According to the Economist, social media like other forms of technology, will cut both ways in politics by making societies more democratic, but also providing those in power with new tools of control.
Are the stressful events of these times affecting you? Do you have distressing feelings that you have never had before? If so, you are not alone. People around the world are feeling the stress of these difficult times.
Stress will always be present in our lives and there are things you can do to take care of yourself. Here are a few ways to start:
- Try to keep your attention focused on what you are doing.
- Spend time doing things you enjoy and you can “get lost in”.
- Do things that use lots of energy and keep you really busy.
- Stay closely connected to and reconnect with family members and friends.
- Every day do all the things you know you need to do to stay well such as eating healthy, moving and getting outside.
- Relaxation and stress reduction exercises, yoga, meditation, prayer and other spiritual or religious practices may help you to feel less stress.
- Keep up to date on the news of the day without spending time to get every detail. You may decide you want to limit your exposure to the news.
- Make a difference in the world by Emailing or calling government officials to inform them about how you feel about the actions they are taking. Join groups that share your views on world events. Assist an organization that is working on relief efforts or help someone in your community who is struggling.
Taken from mentalhealthrecovery.com
Take steps to find ways that will reduce your levels of stress. Each day is a new day to put yourself first. This week I will be blogging about using mindful practices as a method to reduce stress.