Everyone encounters stress during their lives; never-ending bills, demanding schedules, work, and family responsibilities can make stress seem inescapable and uncontrollable. Stress management skills are designed to help a person take control of their lifestyle, thoughts, and emotions and teach them healthy ways to cope with their problems.
Find the Cause
The first step in stress management is identifying your stressors. While this sounds fairly easy (it’s not hard to point to major life changes or a lot of work piling up), chronic stress can be complicated, and most people don’t realize how their habits contribute to their stress. Counseling provides a unique opportunity to get an outside perspective on your life, habits, thoughts, and emotions, that are contributing to your stress level. This is important as chronic stress is not only mentally unsettling, it is a threat to our physical health.
Strategies for Stress Management
Once you’ve found what causes your stress, focus on what you can control. Eliminate the identifiable stressors and develop consistent de-stressing habits. Unfortunately, our current strategies for coping with stress often make it worse or create additional problems. Identifying a plan for maintaining a healthy diet, exercising regularly, and getting enough quality sleep, is a common sense approach that lays the foundation for healthier, less stressful living.
Finally, don’t feel like you have to solve your stress on your own. Reach out to your family and friends. Whether you need help with a problem or just need someone to listen, find a person who will be there to support you. If your stress has become unmanageable and you'd like to work on a plan to regain control of your life, give me a call.