Oftentimes we maneuver through life as if we're impervious to the physical and mental onslaught that's brought on by the various stressors in our lives. We live in a world where the average person spends long hours at work, and may take a week or two of vacation time to catch up on some much needed rest. This is nothing more than a futile attempt to recuperate while running on "E" throughout the year. Our culture tells us to work all day and we can rest later, but that's if there's anything left of you when it's all said and done (Grind Mentality). We've normalized busyness, and made it a bit sexy and acceptable. When did being stressed out and tired become cool and trendy? Stress doesn't always have to be work related. Stress can perk it's ugly head in a myriad of different ways, such as marital issues, relational problems, educational goals, work stressors, health issues, financial issues, an important meeting, a failing business or career goal, disappointments, and the anticipation of the unknown. I wonder what's been stressing you out lately? I wish I could say that we all have a pretty good handle on our stress management, but truthfully speaking, we don't, and that's why mental health professionals such as myself and medical workers will always have a job.
Let me share something with you. But first, I need you to get a little closer to hear me. Are you ready? "You're doing way too much. Try to relax!" I know that we all have kids, responsibilities, and commitments to take care of, but what I am saying is don't neglect taking care of yourself in the process. Stress can take a major toll on our bodies as well. When we allow chronic stress to run roughshod over our lives, it could lead to a plethora of health complications, such as diarrhea, sexual performance issues, menopausal like symptoms, migraines, ulcers, acid reflux, irritability, body aches, insomnia, a weaker immune system, diabetes, nausea, vomiting, constipation, strokes, heart attacks, just to name a few.
What are some next steps that you can take to help counter the effects of stress over your life? I'm glad you asked. You can reach out to a mental health professional who can teach you some healthy coping skills like, journaling, mindfulness, and deep breathing. You can also try going for a walk, eating more healthier, getting some more sleep, re-engaging in some of your favorite hobbies, laughing, listening to music, and getting some daily sunlight. On top of getting some sunlight, try to work out several times a week. You can never go wrong with a little bit of vitamin D in your life! It takes a tandem effort to reduce the various levels of stress in your life.
If you want to start taking better care of your overall stress levels, then take an honest assessment of where you're currently at, and think through some ways you can begin to accomplish some of the aforementioned stress reducing tasks. In light of May being mental health awareness month, I want to encourage everyone to use this week to take a mental health break. This break could look like you going for a walk, taking a nap, writing, unplugging from all electronics and social media, and sitting in your car for an extra five minutes after arriving home at the end of the day. Think creatively when attempting this, and remember, don't stress it. Lol!
© 2020 Marcken Volmy