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by Dr. Jennifer Lagrotte, DMFT
The baby is 3 months old now and we are getting into a routine (sort of). I try to remember each day how thankful I am that we are all healthy and happy. When I do this, it reminds me about how important effective coping skills are in my life and without them, I would not be able to be a healthy person, let alone a good wife and mother. Let's find out what I mean about healthy coping skills.
When one door of happiness closes, another opens, but often we look so long at the closed door that we do not see the one that has been opened for us.
-- Helen Keller
I get told all the time that people do not have the time to cope with their stress everyday. My modest answer is: "How you can not make the time?" Some of us only realize our stress levels are over the top by having a panic attack or having some physical ailment that shocks us into reality, such as a heart attack or an ulcer. Realistically, people handle stress differently, but we all need to know our limits and how to reduce stress everyday.
What can you do to cope with your stress when you have no time? I am going to tell you that you need to make the time, but some of the best ways to do it are:
- Take a lunch break at work, whether it is for 15 or even 10 minutes.
- Find a nighttime routine and stick to it because you need to transition from day to night. Nighttime routines can consist of reading, listening to music or anything else that helps you relax.
- Laugh about it, when you are so stress out and do not know how you are going to get through the day, laughing will help you readjust and give you perspective.
- Talk about it. Talking whether it is to your pet or your loved one, just do it and get it all out.
- Once again I will say it, try to find time to exercise it is a great stress relief.
- Eat healthy. The more stressed we get the easier it is to slack on our good eating habits. Eating healthy will help you cope with your stress and give you the energy you need. The sugar snack will only lift you up for a short time then drop you down again.
- Socialize with real people. Yes the internet is fine to enjoy but get out there and enjoy your peers.
- Make time for yourself; get a massage, or your nails done. Taking time for yourself in your day is necessary to cope effectively.
- Ask for help. You need to know when it is time to ask for help and realize that you are not a superhuman and cannot handle everything yourself.
- Find hobbies or a sport that you enjoy.
- Plan a vacation from your day to day routine. If you cannot afford to go anywhere, just plan a day when you do something besides what gets you so stressed.
- Take your vacation time and use it. If you cannot get away that is okay still take your days and savor home time.
- Do something silly for yourself, whatever that means to you.
- Most importantly, enjoy yourself and those around you, time is short and we need to make the most of it.
Be thankful for all that you have and all that you have accomplished and remember that we all handle stress differently so do not compare yourself to anyone else because you never really know what is going on with them and how they really handle everything. Just because things appear one way does not mean they are.
If you have any feedback for this newsletter or a topic of interest, please do not hesitate to email Jennifer@completecounselingsolutions.com.
Dr. Jennifer B Lagrotte, DMFT
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