The month of April is a time for Stress Awareness Month. Stress can play a role in our daily lives. With the stress of the pandemic and the war in Ukraine, we may feel stress creep in more than ever.
Stress is a normal reaction that everyone experiences at times. We are built to experience stress as your stress response helps keep you alert and ready to avoid danger. But stress becomes a problem when stressors continue without relief. This can lead to negative physical and emotional consequences including:
- Aches and pains.
- Chest pain or a feeling like your heart is racing.
- Exhaustion or trouble sleeping.
- Headaches, dizziness or shaking.
- High blood pressure
- Stomach or digestive problems.
- Anxiety or irritability
- Panic attacks
Sometimes the stress we experience is outside of our control. There are still some things to try to cope with these challenging situations.
- Recognize when you do not have control over the situation
- Work on your reactions to the stressor instead of trying to change it
- Try to focus on something that makes you feel calm
Here are some ways you can cope with stress in your everyday life:
- Carve out time for hobbies.
- Practice meditation or yoga.
- Get enough sleep each night.
- Make time for movement and exercise.
- Eat a healthy diet
- Reach out to your support system.
Having a conversation with those around you about stress can help you or someone you know get the support needed. When we feel overwhelmed and stressed, it’s healthy to have an outlet to let out these emotions. Talking about it not only raises awareness of this topic but can validate the experiences of others.
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