Let's face it: Stress is unavoidable. Now that Teri has described for us the difference between "good" and "bad" stress, we can take action on conquering the "bad" stress and preparing for the "good" stress. As always, there are some things to stay away from when dealing with stress. If feeling stressed, avoid:
- Bad eating habits. Make sure you eat enough, but not too much. Stress can affect our appetite so stay aware of this.
- Tobacco or alcohol in excess. You know how much you generally intake. If you notice an increase, then you're developing a dependency.
- Isolating yourself. Call family and friends and get out. Staying isolated will create depression & increase stress levels.
- Spiraling thoughts. Make sure you're not over-analyzing or thinking about your situation without considering alternatives.
There are several areas of life we all have in common that create stress. Here are some tips that although won't guarantee stress won't occur, but may help keep them somewhat stress free:
Family & Relationships
- Engage in conversations often with immediate family members, & with your own family-of-origin family members too. Share details about your life and listen to their life as well, making it a give-and-receive type of relationship.
- Eat together. Share at least one meal a day with your immediate family to create connection. With other family members who may not be living in the house, try setting up a bi-weekly or monthly lunch or dinner to keep communication going. If they're out-of-state, try setting up a Skype session where you can "eat together".
- Share responsibilities and be helpful. Offer "gifts" to each other by doing chores for one another and helping each other.
This list isn't exhaustive, add to it as it pertains to your family. Tomorrow Alexa will discuss other stressful areas of life and tips for how to manage them. Thanks for reading!
Written by: Tamara McCord MA, LMHC, LCAC
*Tamara enjoys doing marriage counseling, individual counseling, & couples counseling at Imagine Hope. We also specialize in family counseling, child & adolescent counseling. Imagine Hope serves the Indianapolis area, including the surrounding areas of Carmel, Noblesville, Zionsville, Westfield & Fishers.