April is Stress Awareness Month. I have been experiencing a great deal of stress lately, related to a family health crisis. I know that sustained stress can lead to heart disease, diabetes, depression and exhaustion.
I also know that there are things I can do to prevent and reduce stress. Some ideas from the US Department of Health and Human Services include reading a book, getting exercise, spending time with meaningful people and meditating.
It seems inevitable that when someone has a sick family member, people say “Do something nice for yourself.” I know I’ve said it to others, yet it makes me laugh when people say it to me now. How can I afford to spend time on myself when there’s so much else to do?
The reality is that you have to find a way to unplug from the stressful situation, even if it’s only for a short time each day. Otherwise, you will end up causing yourself harm.
While I would like to meditate, I find that I haven’t been very successful at it. Instead, I’m allowing myself to accept that I can’t accomplish everything I want to do right now and I’m allowing people to shower me with caring attentions.
What do you do to minimize stress for yourself?