Stress: how to cope better with the challenges of life

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What causes stress?
Feelings of stress are caused by the body’s instinct has to defend himself. This instinct is good in emergencies, such as getting out of the way of a car at high speed. But stress can cause physical symptoms if it goes on for too long, for example, in response to the challenges of everyday life and change.

Given this situation, it is as if your body gets ready to jump the car but you still there. Your body is working more than necessary with no place to put all that extra energy. This can make you feel anxious, afraid, worried and uptight.
What changes may be stressful?
Any kind of change can make you feel stressed, even good change. It is not just the change or event itself, but also how you react to it that matters. What’s stressful is different for each person. For example, a person may feel stressed by retiring, unlike others.

Among other stressful situations, are a job layoff, when your child leaves the house and returns to it, the death of a spouse, divorce or marriage, an illness, an injury, a promotion at work, money problems, moving, or the birth of a child.
Can stress hurt my health?
Yes and it may even make them worse. Talk to your family doctor if you think some of your symptoms are caused by stress. It is important to make sure your symptoms are not caused by other health problems.

Possible signs of stress
Anxiety
Backache
Constipation or diarrhea
Depression
Fatigue
Headaches
Blood pressure (blood) elevated
Trouble sleeping or insomnia
Problems in their relationships with others
Feeling of “shortness of breath”
Stiff neck or jaw
Upset stomach
Weight gain or loss
What I can do to reduce my stress?
The first step is to learn to recognize when you’re feeling stressed. The first signs of stress include tense shoulders and neck, or close your hands into fists.

The next step is to choose a method for managing stress. One way is to avoid the event or thing that leads to stress, but often this is not possible. A second alternative is to change the way you react to stress. Usually, this is the best option.

Tips to handle stress
Do not worry about things you can not control, such as weather.
Solve small problems. In this way, you can acquire a sense of control.
Prepare to the best of your ability for events you know may be stressful, like a job interview.
Try to look at change as a positive challenge, not a threat.
Try to resolve conflicts with others.
Talk to a friend in which you trust, a family member or a counselor.
Set realistic goals at home and at work. Avoid excessive plans.
Exercise regularly.
Eat well-balanced meals regularly and get enough sleep.
Meditate.
Participate in something you do not find stressful, such as sports, social events or hobbies.
Why exercise useful?
Exercise is a good way to deal with stress, it is a healthy way to relieve pent-up energy and tension. We know that exercise releases chemicals in the brain that make you feel good. In addition, it helps you get in better shape, which makes you feel better overall.
Steps to deep breathing
Lie on a flat surface.
Place one hand on your stomach just above the navel. Place the other hand on your chest.
Fill Breathe in slowly and try to raise a little stomach.
Hold your breath for a second.
Exhale slowly and allow the stomach to return to the down position.
What is meditation?
Meditation is a form of guided thought. It can take many forms. You can implement it with exercise repeating the same motions over and over, like walking or swimming. You can meditate by practicing relaxation techniques, exercising, stretching or breathing deeply.

The training is easy to relax. Start with one muscle. Hold tight for a few seconds and then relax. Repeat this step for each of the muscles starting with your toes, following the feet and moving up the different parts of the body, one muscle group at a time.

Stretching can also relieve stress. Turn your head in a gentle circle. Raise your arms trying to reach the ceiling and bend side to side slowly. Roll your shoulders.

Deep, relaxed breathing itself can help relieve stress (see chart at right). Thus, you can get enough oxygen and activate the relaxation response, the antidote to the stress of the body.

For more help in the treatment of stress symptoms, seek advice from your family doctor

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