Stress

STRESS

STRESS…..STRESSSTRESS….What comes to mind when you hear the word STRESS? For me, Stress is a feeling of extreme worry that can affect our normal way of thinking and living.  On the site dictionary.com, one of the definitions for Stress states:

“A specific response by the body to a stimulus, as fear or pain, that disturbs or interferes with the normal physiological equilibrium of an organism.” (http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/stress)

Stress is caused by a lot of things; Bills, our jobs or lack of, school, children, family members; the list goes on and on. We stress so much that it affects our bodies. According to Wikipedia, here are some signs of Stress:

“Signs of stress may be cognitive, emotional, physical or behavioral. Signs include poor judgment, a general negative outlook, excessive worrying, moodiness, irritability, agitation, inability to relax, feeling lonely, isolated or depressed, aches and painsdiarrhea or constipation, nauseadizzinesschest pain, rapid heartbeat, eating too much or not enough, sleeping too much or not enough, social withdrawal, procrastination or neglect of responsibilities, increased alcohol,

nicotine or drug consumption, and nervous habits such as pacing about or nail-biting.” (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stress_(biology))

I’m sure we have all experienced some of these signs. I remember in 2004, I had an extremely bad headache and I couldn’t even keep my eyes open. I called the emergency hotline to my doctor’s office and was told to go to the emergency room. After about 4 hours in the E.R., I was told that my blood pressure was through the roof and was put on bed rest for 3 days.  I think the meds they put me on was making things worst! LOL… but while looking at my head x-rays, they doctors said there was a lot of tension on my brain and that they couldn’t understand how a 22 year old could be so stressed out. I’m thinking in my head “Well let’s see…my finals are coming up and this will determine if I get my Associates, I’m having issues in my personal life trying to decide between two people, I spent more time traveling on trains and buses than I did sleeping….” I knew where the stress was coming from! After I saw my own doctor, I was put on pressure pills for one month. I had to stick to this list of things to eat like steamed broccoli, brown rice, water and I had to avoid (my legal addiction) COFFEE! I did this for 30 days. At the time it actually made me feel better. I didn’t stick to the diet they gave me but a lot of the stress was eliminated.

STRESS MANAGEMENT

There are a lot of things that we can do to eliminate or at least minimize stress in our lives; We can change the way we eat (more fruits and vegetables), DRINK PLENTY OF WATER!!!! We can exercise as well. Having fun and enjoying life is also very important. Life is not all work, work, work! I come from a religious background so I will always recommend attending church services.

And last, DO NOT, I REPEAT, DO NOT STRESS OVER SITUATIONS THAT CAN NOT BE CHANGED! Some things you just have to accept and move on. When I reflect over the past 12 months, I saw how when I began to accept things for what they were and not for what I wanted them to be, it made my life much easier.

Serenity Prayer

God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.

Links about Stress, Stress Management, Stress Test

  1. How Stressed Are You? http://www.lessons4living.com/stress_test.htm
  2. Mental Health America: Stress,  http://www.nmha.org/go/mhm/2009/stress-signs
  3. The Serenity Prayer http://www.cptryon.org/prayer/special/serenity.html