Thursday, July 8, 2010

Stress Management!!! ?

Quick update:
My friend had her baby!!!!
The terrible two are in full force just as they should be.
I’m running around like a mad woman trying to organize things for my soon to be 5 year old to have her M&M candy party. (I’ll be sure to post all the details if I survive)

Did you ever notice how any given day can unexpectedly turn into a stressful heap of “Aaaaaaa, get me out of here!!!!”?

Stress is everywhere. Even good things can bring on a certain amount of stress like having a baby, getting married, starting anew job. Then there are the unforeseen things that just pop up like a flat tire, a broken coffee maker when you really need some caffeine or the Sunday driver that pulls out in front of you when you’re already running a little behind.

As a therapist, stress management was one of my treatment goals at least 80% of the time. If it wasn’t a treatment goal I made sure that the topic came into conversation on a regular basis. Even though stress is such a huge part of our day-to-day life and something that we know has a big impact on us when the chips are down, it is rarely ever handled in a healthy manner.

We yell, we hold it all in, we snip at innocent bystanders, we eat, we drink, and we loose sleep. Stress can build to the point of causing additional health issues.

On a good day most people will do at least a few things to take care of themselves. Let’s make a good choice for something healthy: choose fruit or veggies over that bag a chips, choose water over that soda, choose to take a walk rather than sitting in front of the TV stewing over whatever it is irritating you, choose to call a friend and vent. Getting it off your chest really does help. Sometimes it’s just the opportunity to hear it out loud or the feeling that someone else knows or even validates what you are feeling.

We can make good choices but we rarely do. Do something today to help ease your stress. Make it a habit and when things are raining down on you, you‘ll be better equipped.

Let’s start off today with something simple like deep breathing. The next time you need to “count to ten” you’ll know how to get the most out of your ten.

First off, correct your posture… head up, shoulders back. Inhale through your nose and take in as much air as you can. Fill your lungs. Your inhale should take a good 2 to 4 count. Pause for a second and then release. Exhale through your mouth nice and slowly. The exhale should take at least twice as long as the inhale. A good 4 to 8 count. Rest, and then take another breath. Be careful if you’re not used to this you could get light headed.

I’m going to periodically check in to remind you to decompress you stress. I’ll toss in a few other stress management techniques along the way and in the mean time you keep practicing your deep breathing.


Inhale...


Exhale...

Breathe...



5 comments:

blueviolet said...

Deep breathing really does work. It's interesting that it does!

Intense Guy said...

Mm... I feel lightheaded... :)

How much therapy work do you do? I find that car that cuts me off and then either pokes along or nearly immediately slams on the brakes (and doesn't indicate) and then has to wait awhile to make a turn when there is no one behind me - increasingly hard to deal with....

Cody Clark said...

It makes a lot of sense. Everybody has their personal view when it comes to stress management. According to me If you are are dealing with stress then first learn not to take everything personally. Your behavior is the only thing that you can control.

Alexis AKA MOM said...

Good tips I have those days over and over and I can use all the help I can get. I need to stop and look at things before I go nutty!

breathe said...

love the name of your blog! And absolutely remember to breathe!! I know we are all breathing (!)but slow and steady breathing is such a powerful tool for stress management and overcoming anxiety. great