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Stress Management for Better Health

By Madhusudhan Tammisetti

If your everyday stress levels are high, you're putting your health at risk. Stress not only wreaks havoc on your physical health but also emotional equilibrium. Family responsibilities and hectic work schedules can be demanding and can take a toll on your health. It affects your ability to function effectively, think clearly, and enjoy life. It may seem you're not in control of stress levels, but you've got more control in keeping the stress levels down than you might think.

Identify What Causing Stress in Your Life

The first step of stress management is to identify the sources causing stress in your life. You can identify the sources causing major stress, such as going through a divorce, moving, or changing jobs. But finding what's causing chronic stress can be a difficult task. It's easy to overlook your feelings, behaviors, and thoughts that contribute to everyday stress levels.

Do you think of stress as a temporary problem that can be dealt with later? Although you don't have time for yourself to relax. Has stress become an integral part of work and home life? Or, do you blame it on outside events or other people?

Until you take responsibility for the part you play in creating stress or maintaining it, the stress levels remain outside your control.

Stress Management Techniques

Although stress is an automatic response generated from the nervous system, you can predict some stressors such as commute to work, family gatherings, or meeting your boss. You can handle such stressors by either changing your reaction or adapting to the situation. When deciding which option to choose, you can take the help of four A's: avoid, alter, adapt, and accept.

The first A stands for avoiding unnecessary stress. Whether in your professional or personal life, taking more than you can handle can cause stress. It's important to know what you should and shouldn't do and, whenever possible, say no to taking too much work. Know what your limits are and stick to them.

Avoid people consistently causing stress in your life and if that's not possible, then limit the time you spend with them.

Second A is to alter the situation. Try to alter the stressful situation if you can't avoid it. Instead of suppressing your feelings, be assertive, and express them respectfully to the person bothering you.

Adapt to the stressor is the third A. When you adapt to stressful situations, you can regain control by changing your attitude and expectations. Instead of fuming about the stressful situation, view it from a positive perspective.

The fourth A stands for accepting things you can't change. Sometimes situations are beyond your control, such as serious illness, losing someone dear to you, or recession. Acceptance may be difficult, but it is the best way to cope with unavoidable stressful situations.

By identifying the sources causing stress and following four A's, you can deal with stress-related situations.

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Surprise, Ariz.

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