does occur, it is important to recognize and deal with it. Here
are some suggestions for ways to handle stress. As you begin to
understand more about how stress affects you as an individual, you
will come up with your own ideas of helping to ease the tensions.
activity. When you're nervous, angry, or upset, release the pressures
through exercise or physical activity. Running, walking, playing
tennis, or working in your garden are just some of the activities
you might try. Physical exercise will relieve that "uptight"
feeling, relax you, and turn the frowns into smiles. Remember, your
body and your mind work together.
Know your limits. If a problem is beyond your control and cannot
be changed at the moment, don't fight the situation. Learn to accept
what is - for now - until such time when you can change it.
Take care of
yourself. You are special. Get enough rest and eat well. If you
are irritable and tense from lack of sleep or if you are not eating
correctly, you will have less ability to deal with stressful situations.
Make time for
fun. Schedule time for both work and recreation. Play can be just
as important to your well-being as work; you need a break from your
daily routine to just relax and have fun.
Be a participant.
One way to keep from getting bored, sad, and lonely is to go where
it's all happening. Sitting alone can make you feel frustrated.
Instead of feeling sorry for yourself, get involved and become a
participant. Offer your services in neighborhood or volunteer organizations.
Help yourself by helping other people. Get involved in the world
and the people around you. You're on your way to making new friends
and enjoying new activities.
Check off your
tasks. Trying to take care of everything at once can seem overwhelming,
and, as a result, you may not accomplish anything. Instead, make
a list of what tasks you have to do, then do one at a time, checking
them off as they're completed. Give priority to the most important
ones and do those first.
Must you always
be right? Do other people upset you - particularly when they don't
do things your way? Try cooperation instead of confrontation: it's
better than fighting and always being "right." A little
give and take on both sides will reduce the strain and make you
both feel more comfortable.
It's okay to
cry. A good cry can be a healthy way to bring relief to your anxiety,
and it might even prevent a headache or other physical consequence.
Take some deep breaths: they also release tension.
Create a quiet
scene. You can't always run away, but you can "dream the impossible
dream." A quiet country scene painted mentally, or on canvas,
can take you out of the turmoil of the stressful situation. Change
the scene by reading a good book or by playing beautiful music to
create a sense of peace and tranquility.
THE ART OF RELAXATION
The best strategy
for avoiding stress is to learn how to relax. Unfortunately, many
people try to relax at the same pace that they lead the rest of
their lives. For a while, tune out your worries about time, productivity,
and "doing right." You will find satisfaction in just
being, without striving. Find activities that give you pleasure
and that are good for your mental and physical well being. Forget
about always winning. Focus on relaxation, enjoyment, and health.
Be good to yourself.
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