It’s always with us, but there are ways to rethink, reframe, and respond to stress that are healthy – and helpful.
Stress is natural and it’s something that everyone experiences. It’s your body’s automatic response to perceived pressure or threat. Stress seems to know when to hit you and it can hit you all at once – like on the day of your big presentation or it can build up over time – exploding like a time bomb. I know my tendency is to try and suppress the stress as long as possible and when it bubbles up BOOM…there’s either a cry fest, scream fit or both. I’m the worst at handling stress. I may look like I have it together, but most days this is what’s happening inside. Bless my family for braving those storms! I have yet to learn how to channel that stress into something positive or useful.
The Weight Watchers Weekly on this subject reminds you that you can use stress to motivate you, like when you pull all the details together for a surprise party. But more often it works against you and your health. Stress can show up in many forms – pain, difficulty sleeping, upset stomach, and headaches. It takes its toll on your emotional health too. Some of the things you can experience when this happens is difficulty concentrating, feeling irritable, tired or always worried. When you’re experiencing stress – let’s face it you’re more likely to overeat, eat unhealthy foods and gain weight.
Weight Watchers gives some suggestions on how you can reframe your stress. Although we can’t control stressful situations, we can change our response to them. What you think determines how you feel, which determines what you do. Learning how to identify unhelpful thoughts now and the next time the stress gets in your face, you can reality check the situation, shift your thinking and come away with a calmer, more realistic prospective.
Here are some quick ideas of things you can do in the moment that stress hits you hard. It will give you a chance to focus on something else, which then in turn will help you make a positive mindset change. When you’re stuck in the moment of stress it can seem endless with no hope in sight – so one of these tricks may help you shift gears a little faster.
I know for me, the switch to darkness can happen fast when I’m stressed, so I plan on posting these in my office so I can refer to them when I’m having a moment. I’m fortunate to have a friend that I can “lifeline” text anytime about any subject and she supports me. Because as we all know sometimes your spouse may not give you the same support as your ride or die.
What types of things do you do when you’re stressed out or feel it coming on?
REF: Weight Watchers Weekly dated February 25 – March 3, 2018