April – Stress Awareness Month

Stress has come to mean so many things in our lives and can be experienced in a variety of ways. In one way, it could be explained as a physical, mental, or emotional strain or tension that impacts your body and health. Stress does not necessarily have to come from a traumatic experience. Often stress is simply a part of daily life. Identifying stress is the first step in managing its effects.

Some reactions to a stressful situation can include:
  • Frustration or feeling sad
  • Difficulty concentrating and making decisions
  • Shock or numbness
  • Headaches, back pains, and stomach issues

If we do not learn to manage our stress, it could lead to long-term problems such as stomach disorders, depression, stroke, heart disease, etc.

Do not let stress take control of your life. Start learning to let go of things you cannot control and recognize what triggers your stress. Work on becoming more resilient and healthier overall. 

Here are a few recommendations to help you learn how to cope with stress:
  • Create a better work-life balance – to achieve this, start by setting limits, managing your time, learning to say “no,” and detaching from work outside of business hours.       
  • Get enough sleep – aim for 8 to 10 hours of sleep. Learn about your sleep patterns and how to improve the quality of your sleep using the app Sleep Cycle.
  • Eat healthy meals – choose good carbs, reduce processed foods, eat more vegetables and fruits, avoid foods with trans-fat, and become a mindful eater. Give MyFitnessApp a try to keep track of your calories.
  • Exercise or go for a walk – for at least 30 to 45 minutes every day. If you would like to get more ideas for workouts, visit the website MuscleWiki.
  • Talk with someone that you trust – rely on your tribe.
  • Practice meditation, yoga, or breathing exercises – to learn more about these great practices, visit Mindful.com.
  • Set limits and boundaries – in your personal and professional life.
  • Seek help from a professional – Hunton Group provides confidential online/phone support with a licensed professional. Visit Unum.com to learn more about these amazing benefits.

For more information about stress and to learn more about it, visit The American Institute of Stress.

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