By now, you probably know that in today’s world, stress plays a role in up to 90% of all disease. Stressors themselves can be extraordinary events, but usually they are simply the pressures of daily living. Distress, however, or that which is most associated with illness is the difference between those daily pressures and our ability to cope with them.
No matter how hard you try, you won’t completely avoid the stress of daily living. But you can learn both to reduce your stressors and increase your coping skills at the same time. This is a matter of looking at many of your attitudes and habits. Perhaps you’ve bitten off more than you can chew or maybe you’re not making as much out of your life as you wish you could. These are things that can be turned around, provided you make the commitment to do so. Although stress is experienced by everyone, it’s not handled the same by everyone. It’s important that you know when stress is turning into distress, so that you can take action before your health is affected.
Some basic practices to stress management include:
- Setting realistic goals and assessing them periodically
- Putting regular exercise such as walking 30-45 minutes per day or aerobics into your life
- Practicing daily meditation or relaxation exercises
- Carefully managing your time
- And most importantly spending that precious time doing more of the things that you enjoy.