Take a deep breath and relax. For National Stress Awareness Day SlimGenics wants to provide some helpful tips and advice for coping with different types of stress because, as you may already know, stress affects more than just your emotions. Chronic stress can take a toll on your immune system, mental health and the overall functions of your bodily systems. Sponsored by the Health Resource Network (HRN), Stress Awareness Day is a national effort to inform people about the health dangers of stress and how to better manage stressors in your life.
Today is your chance to reflect on the things that trigger anxiety or stress for you. Think about what causes them and how you can better manage these stressful situations on a daily basis. In his 1970 book, “Stress and the Manager,” Dr. Karl Albrecht identified four main types of stress which are very much still applicable today.
This type of stress refers to worrying about time or a lack of time in your everyday life. When you worry you have too much on your plate to accomplish everything in the number of hours in each day, it takes a toll on how you feel about your endeavors and accomplishments. We all worry about deadlines and rush to avoid being late, so how can we better overcome Time Stress?
Managing: Learning better time-management skills, such as making lists, creating timelines and making sure you have devoted enough time to balance in your life helps to combat time stress. If you enjoy walking, biking, reading or meditating and find it essential to your overall well-being, set just 20 minutes aside each day to take this time for yourself. By better handling your time, you’ll find you set aside things you once had prioritized for today, realizing they can be pushed to another time.
Anticipatory stress describes the stress you feel when you consider upcoming events, deadlines or situations. This impending trepidation doesn’t necessarily have to focus on one finite situation or event; instead it can also refer to an unclear, unidentified feeling of stress that something in the future will turn out poorly.
Managing: Visualizing a positive outcome can help you better manage Anticipatory Stress. Focus on what you can achieve in the present, which will help you triumph in the future. Oftentimes, we imagine the worst outcomes to a possible situation, so it’s best to focus on the present where we have control of things right now. Finally, by analyzing and providing situational strategies for possible outcomes you help diminish your fears of the future by having a safety net of possibilities.
You may experience situational stress when you find yourself in a situation in which you have little to no control. This could be an emergency or unplanned situation. Being diagnosed with an illness, being laid off from your job or getting into a car accident are all examples of situational stress.
Managing: Since situational stress appears suddenly, it is more difficult to come up with a plan to combat it. However, by being self-aware, you can better recognize the signs your body is experiencing emotional stress and begin to calm down. Expect the unexpected and know that unplanned occurrences are around every corner. Know your weaknesses and how you can avoid letting your temper or emotions get ahold of you.
Encounter Stress revolves around the fear or anxiety that arises when you worry about interacting with a particular group of people or one certain person. Whether this person (or group of people) doesn’t like you, you don’t like them or they are just unpredictable, being around them causes you anxiety. So how do you handle these Encounter Stress situations?
Managing: Enhance your “people skills” by understanding that interacting with others is almost always unavoidable, especially in the workplace. Be understanding of other peoples’ points of view and try and remain empathetic to their actions and words. Remember, it’s okay to take a break or remove yourself from a situation if you feel the stress overpowering you. But if you just can’t seem to get away from this person or people, remain calm and collected, and try to find your “happy place.” Picture a beach or somewhere quiet and just take a few deep breaths, once you find some balance, you’ll see it’s a bit easier to deal with these encounters.
Life can be stressful – no doubt! But managing stress is an important part of overall wellness. Sometimes it’s easy to classify your type of stress into one bucket and there are times when your stress may fall into multiple categories. SlimGenics always encourages you to take time for yourself and to take care of yourself. We hope these stress management tips just might provide insights into lessening the pressures you’re managing. Always remember … just breathe.