Tactic for Coping with Stress

. Tuesday, October 7, 2008
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Studies show that those who are unable to express their emotions are at greatest risk of stress related disorders. The following steps promote constructive emotional expression and ways of minimizing daily stresses. They should in no way be considered a substitute for appropriate psychiatric, psychological, or family counseling to help deal with situations in which depression is a significant factor.
  • Learn to bring out into the open hidden or suppressed feelings of anger. For example, a headache that almost immediately follows an event may be a sign of suppressed anger.
  • Try to deal with anger as soon as possible by helping the person involved understand why and when you feel angry.
  • If anger stems from situation or person who cannot be confronted, or is out of your control, to acknowledge this fact. You might try to blow off steam through physical activity. Exercise is one of the best stress reducers, whether the cause is anger, frustration, anxiety, or another emotion. In addition to sports, physical activity such as gardening, dancing, or even cleaning the house may also help diffuse negative emotions.
  • Recognize other manifestation of stress, particularly those which may suggest significant depression-insomnia, irritability, nervous eating or skipping meals, withdrawal from friends, loss of interest in sex. If the source of the stress is difficult to define, or seemingly overwhelming, get help; share your concerns, feeling, and anxieties with your spouse, family, a close friend, clergy, or family or psychiatric counselor, if necessary. Sharing feelings allow for ventilation, better perspective, and reassurance. Sharing enlarges the spirit, whereas withholding feeling and internalizing serves only to isolate and thereby magnify the impact of the problems beyond reasonable bounds.
  • Avoid particularly exasperating situations; if long lines produce stress, choose nonrush periods or transact business by mail or telephone.
  • Some like to learn a relaxation technique such as yoga, meditation, biofeedback, relaxation, exercise or deep breathing. Taking a warm bath, reading a good, listening to music, or going for a massage can also be relaxing. Use what work best for you as a daily stress reducing strategy.
  • Avoid becoming upset over events that you cannot change and, instead, focus effort on those within your control. Be honest about acknowledge he difference. As the late Reinhold Niebuhr so aptly put it.” Good grant us grace to accept with serenity the things that cannot be changed, courage to change the wisdom to distinguish the one from the other”.
  • Finding the humor in event or your reaction to them (When possible) is a very effective tension releaser.
  • Learn to recognize and modify, if possible, attitudes that may promote stress, for example, extreme perfectionism, preoccupation with time, sensitivity to criticism, and lack of flexibility, among others. Have faith and confidence in yourselp without relying on good looks, and status to determine your self worth.
  • Remember, get professional counseling if other methods are ineffective in coping with stress.


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