Skip to main content

About Me

My photo
Hope & Encouragement for Women

Managing Stress in Healthy Ways



Between 75-90% of all doctor’s visits are stress-related. Stress comes in a variety of symptoms, ailments, and conditions. Stress can affect you spiritually, physically, and emotionally. There are many things in life to cause us to feel stress and anxious. Chronic stress can complicate matters and can lead to burn-out and Adrenal Fatigue.


The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines stress as a state of mental tension and worry caused by problems in your life, work, etc.; something that causes strong feelings of worry and anxiety; a physical, chemical factor that causes bodily or mental tension and may be a factor in disease causation.

What happens to our bodies under stress:

1.     Cortisol mediates various metabolic processes. Cortisol levels can be elevated if we are under physical or psychological stress.
2.    Immune system can weaken and you can become more susceptible to colds and flus.
3.      Have difficulty falling or staying asleep.
4.      Bouts of irritability, anger, and easily frustrated/annoyed.
5.      Fatigue and don’t feel like you got a restful night’s sleep.
6.      Anxiousness, fear, and low moods (mild depression).
7.      Mood swings (hormones out of balance).
8.      Feelings of being overwhelmed.
9.      Eating too much or too little.
10.  General sense of not feeling well (malaise).

What are we stressed about? Some common stressors in people’s lives:

1.      Family
2.      Marriage (getting married if you are not married)
3.      Children
4.      Finances
5.      Work, career
6.      School
7.      Budgeting, paying bills
8.      Paying for children’s education, college
9.      Health
10.  Health of family members
11.  Friendships (lack of or not spending enough time with)
12.  Death of a loved one
13.  Death of a pet
14.  Divorce, remarriage
15.  Stepfamilies
16.  Salvation of loved ones
17.  Not sleeping
18.  Unresolved childhood issues or unresolved grief issues
19.  Single parenting
20.  Fear of the unknown, not being in control
21.  Addictions with self or family members
22.  Infidelity
23.  Infertility, miscarriage, abortion
24.  Moving, adjustments/transitions
25.  New job or retirement
26.  Having a baby
27.  Debt
28.  Family member moving in
29.  Family member having emotional/ mental difficulties
30.  A goal/dream was not accomplished

Add up the above stresses for the past year and if you listed 5 or more that occurred this last year, you could have a high level of stress that needs to be dealt with.

Steps to Coping with Stress and ways to Manage Stress Levels:

1.      Spend daily time in the Word, praying and giving thanksgiving for the things that are good in your life.
2.      Attend church regularly and fellowship with the Body of Christ.
3.      Write down (5) things to be thankful for EVERYDAY. Keep a Gratitude Journal.
4.      Journal, write often. Write the date on each journal entry and how you are feeling, what God is speaking to you, and anything else that would be helpful.
5.      Walk or do light exercising. Walking is the best exercise for stress reduction.
6.      Take it One Day at a Time. Focus your energy and thoughts on the present day.
7.      Do something fun daily! Enjoy your life!
8.      Find a hobby such as gardening, bird watching, or painting.
9.      Watch comedies often! Laugh! Smile!
10.  Take every thought captive into the Obedience of Jesus Christ and renew your mind continually. Watch what you are thinking and talking about.
11.  Eat balanced meals consisting of fresh fruits, vegetables, and protein. Stay away as much as possible from fried foods, processed foods, sugary snacks, and high-energy drinks.
12.  Drink 3 cups of green tea. You can choose to drink (1) 8oz. cup of coffee.
13.  Switch to Stevia instead of sugar.
14.  Limit your time with negative, draining, and toxic people. Watch who your spending your time with.
15.  Avoid overreacting to problems as much as possible. Practice praying first, and being still.
16.  Listen to relaxation music such as jazz, classical, and soothing sounds.
17.  Take bubble baths and light scented candles.
18.  Light scented candles and other fragrant scents throughout your home.
19.  Don’t take on the burdens and problems of others. You can pray for others always and intercede ONLY when God calls you to.
20.  Set limits and boundaries with others. Learn to say, “No.” Do not try and meet the expectations of everyone.
21.  Be a God pleaser not a man pleaser.
22.  Do not seek the approval of others but what God would have you to do.
23.  If you are able to afford a massage or you can have your spouse do for you.
24.  Take time off when you can. Rest when you can. You don’t have to be going and doing all the time!
25.  Take small vacations or staycations if you cannot afford to leave.
26.  Nap when you can and when you need to, its okay!
27.  Eat sitting down and eat slowly and enjoy your meals.
28.  Do not live in a hurry or rushing around. Let your pace be relaxing.
29.  Help when you can help but don’t take on the responsibility of others.
30.  Forgive yourself, forgive others.
31.  Be gentle with yourself. Stop being so hard on yourself. Let go of perfectionism.
32.  Take a multi-vitamin, B-vitamin and look into natural herbal remedies. I do not make any medical disclaimers here.




Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Counselor's Corner: Investing in Your Marriage

If you have been married for any length of time you know that marriage is hard work. As with anything successful in your life putting time and effort are keys to how fruitful those things will be.


Perhaps you did not have the proper role models growing up to show you how to have a successful marriage, but you desire to have a healthy marriage. If God has brought you together with your spouse the greatest investment that you can make besides your relationship with God is your marriage.


Anyone can have a dull, lifeless marriage, but a marriage that is thriving takes certain elements to help it succeed. If you planted some flowers but forgot to fertilize and water those plants they would eventually become lifeless and die. Healthy marriages take the time to nurture and weed out anything hindering their relationship.



Couples striving for a healthy marriage should first ask God to cleanse their hearts of any unforgiveness, anger, resentment or offenses of their spouse. Staying angry or rese…

Counsselor's Corner: Where has Your Focus Been Lately?

What you focus on the most will grow. The enemy will try to get you to focus on what is wrong, what is not working, and what is worrisome to you. When you lose your focus on what is true, what is right, what is lovely and what is a good report (Philippians 4:6), you will begin to focus on the opposite of these.


CHOOSING to focus on the good will be a daily decision. When the enemy shows you something that is causing fear, worry or frustration, turn away and CHOOSE to focus on the good.


→If your focus has been more on the negative lately check to see who you have been hanging out with, what you have been reading or watching on TV, and giving your attention to the most.


→An unthankful heart can cause you to focus on your wants, but a heart of gratitude will cause you to focus on your blessings.


Distractions come to sidetrack you and get you to focus on what the enemy has brought in front of you. Keeping focus on Jesus means deliberately fading out everything that pulls you away from the…

Counselor's Corner: Healing from Trauma

→What is trauma?
A deeply distressing experience, or a very difficult or unpleasant experience that causes someone to have mental or emotional problems usually for a long time.


Trauma can occur one time like death, natural disasters or accidents, or trauma can be prolonged and repetitive like abusive relationships, family with addictions, or combat.


Trauma that causes the most mental health issues are prolonged and repeated traumas and trauma that occurs from people especially parent-child relationships.



→What is a traumatic event?
Extreme stress that overwhelms a person’s ability to cope and overwhelms a person emotionally, cognitively and physically.


→Symptoms of trauma:
·Hypervigilant/guarded
·Easily startled
·Sensitive to certain noises
·Feeling on edge
·Depression/anxiety
·Overwhelming feelings of guilt
·Intrusive thoughts of trauma
·Disconnected from others and difficulty trusting others
·Difficulty handling stress
·Emotional numbness


→Long-term effects of trauma can include:
·Substance and alc…