Like snowflakes, we are all one of a kind. The stresses we have may be distinctive to each of us, and how we deal with them may not be comparable either. Yet, the tensions of day to day living get a boost this time of year for most people when holiday menus, shopping for gifts, and navigating snowy weather are added to the mix. Heidi Grant Halvorsen, Ph.D. writes for Huffpost Healthy Living, and has offered up some ways to deal with stress. She reminds her readers that everyone has stress – how it’s dealt with makes all the difference.


Have some self-compassion. Cutting yourself some slack is a great gift you can give to yourself. While studies show that people who are self-compassionate are more optimistic, happier, less anxious and depressed, they are also more successful! Halvorsen points out that a dose of self-compassion during the tough times can actually bring your stress level down, so you feel better.


Routines are a good thing. Many migraineurs know that keeping a daily routine can help to control headaches. Routines can also help us reduce our stress by reducing the number of daily decisions we need to make. Implementing a morning routine, as well as one while packing up for the day can help. Think about all the decisions you need to make in a day – some that may affect you in big ways, and others that may not. The idea is to cut back on the decisions that are not a big deal – like where should I go for lunch today. Less decisions mean less mental tension, which means less stress.


Look at the big picture. Attatching a small action to a greater purpose or meaning, can help encourage you to see the importance of the effort. An example might be, getting up from the computer each hour and taking an “activity break.” While routinely taking the breaks are good for your mental and physical health, you may not be thinking that when you are standing up. Yet, hopefully you will begin to see the breaks as an energizer to your daily routine – and a healthy long-term habit.    Huffpost Healthy Living   12/19/12





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