Stressing over Stress Management

Ahhh...this looks like a stress management tip I can handle!

I case you missed my talk last night at the 3rd Annual Women’s Symposium here in Colorado, here’s some of the stuff I talked about:

Sometimes stress management stresses us out.  Do you know what I mean?  It goes something like this:

I should do yoga 3x/week

I should be meditating in the morning for 30 minutes before my family gets up

I should be communing with nature everyday

Ummm…right.  Those things just aren’t going to happen for me.  Perhaps they should, but they’re not.  And it certainly doesn’t help matters to feel stressed about not doing the “right” things for stress management.  So I’m offering an alternative.  A few cheap and easy de-stressors  – some of which you might already be doing.

  • Breathe. Take a few deep breaths a couple times a day.  Imagine you are blowing on a bubble wand or a dandelion to ensure the really cleansing, relaxing kinds of breath I’m talking about.
  • Learn something new. Try out a class, get a book at the library, or watch a video on YouTube – there are lots of ways to learn new skills.
  • Remember something old. Think back to activities that used to bring you joy and give them a try again.  Rollerskating, anyone?
  • Get crafty. Crafting is a time-honored way for women to connect and de-stress (think sewing circles and quilting bees).  Pick up some yarn, a needle, some beads, a paintbrush – something to get the creative juices flowing.
  • Have sex.  Research tells us that that having safe sex with another willing adult can be one of the best stress-relievers around!
  • Pick up the phone.  Calling a friend can be a wonderful way to gain a new perspective on life.
  • Move your body. Take a walk, stretch a little bit, dance to the radio – do something to move your body in a new way.
  • Laugh.  Laughter really can be the best medicine.  And finding funny things has never been easier with the internet!
  • Do something fun.  This may seem like a no-brainer, but how often do we really do things just for the fun of it?

Now, get out there and do some de-stressing.

5 thoughts on “Stressing over Stress Management

  1. says:

    The word “Stress” actually relates to wear and tear as when the rubber meets the road on a tire or the brake pads pressing up against the rotor in the wheel. The term as it applies to living organisms was first introduced by Hans Seyle in the 1930’s who defined it as the consequence of the failure of an organism (human or animal) to respond appropriately to emotional or physical threats, whether actual or imagined. Thus stress symptoms are the manifestation of a chronic state of responses to stress triggers that are actually benign. Even a thought can set off the same response mechanism that would be in play while standing in front of a hungry lion. Hence, Seyle’s definition still reaches to the heart of stress management; the idea of the response being inappropriate and engaging in a process of altering ones misperception of pending disaster or imminent danger.

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