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STRESS ASSESSMENT Things to think about?

· Do you find yourself getting less joy from your work and feeling a sense of burnout?

· Do you find yourself drinking alcohol more to relax, smoking to deal with stress or using other “vices”?

· Do you find yourself getting upset by quite trivial things?

· Do you experience breathing difficulty (i.e. excessively rapid breathing) or sweaty palms?

· Do you tend to overreact to situations?

· Do you find yourself getting impatient when delayed in anyway, like by elevators, traffic lights, or people who keep you waiting?

· Is your sex life suffering (low libido)?

· Is it hard for you to calm down after something upsets you?

· Do you have trouble sleeping throughout the night?

· Do you experience “Road rage”?

· Do you have trouble concentrating?

· Do you find yourself catching colds often or just can’t seem to get over it?

What is Stress: Definition- a state of mental or emotional strain or tension resulting from adverse or very demanding circumstances?

Stress can be both positive and negative.

Positive Stress : Protective: During acute stress the Fight or Flight sensory to prevent you from danger using your sympathetic system pushing hormones out to the body as the adreneal gland releases adreanaline and noradrenaline. (Increase in heart rate, blood pressure, breathing, dilated pupils and body becomes tense). The body takes 20-60 minutes to return to pre-stressed state.

Negative Stress over a period of time becomes a “new normal” and results in a standard of living. This standard can lead to Increase in Cortisol (production of fat) which can lead to Eating disorders and obesity, Lower Immunity, High Blood Pressure, Cardiovascular Disease which includes heart disease, Heart attacks and possible strokes, Hair Loss, Interrupted Digestion (constipation or even diarrhea), low sex drive, Headaches. Mental Health Problems such as depression, anxiety and personality disorders…. STRESS KILLS!!

Who does Stress Affect? Everyone : Family, Coworkers, Friends and those around you.

Tackling Stress with the 4F’s:

Faith : Tapping into a Higher Source : Connecting with those that can help reduce the stress from religious or community organizations. For those that believe, tap into the power of prayer, mediation or for moments of clarity, understanding or centering within. (listening to your body, gathering your thoughts and sorting through your emotions). Getting into a mindset of gratitude. (change of perspective with a positive outlook). Cup Half FULL analogy. Whats your plan to snap out of stress and into thankfulness?

Family : The Power of a Support System : Staying connected with your those that can provide emotional and encouragement. There is no such thing as a 1 man island. Do NOT Keep it bottled up! Seek Additional HELP! Identify your plan when it comes to your family and go to people.

Finances : Getting Above Water to be able to breathe / Identify the difference between goals and wants. Setting limits for yourself (in spending or savings). Speak with a financial advisor (who you trust). Create a Financial Plan

Fitness : Taking Care of your Body is essential to handle the burdens of everyday living. Start small! Make one health-related commitment that you know you can stick with. Ex: Strive for 5 : Just 30 minutes of Activity for 5 Days a week. Or Commit drinking the adequate amount of water per day. Establish a Fitness Plan

· Breathing techniques : Breathing Deeply 10 Times to control your breath

· Hydration : Drink at least half your weight in ounces

· Getting Enough Sleep: At least 7-8 hours (uninterrupted is optimal)

· Clean Eating : Phytonutrients (colorful and vibrant) Leafy colorful veggies and fruits

· Getting Active : Strive for 5 : 5 Days of 30 minutes (example: brisk walking)

· Stretching and balance : Taking time to center your thoughts and listen to your body

· Tune into your body: Tend to what aches : DON’T IGNORE

· Be Present (turn off the phone – shut the noise off):Get away and read or enjoy moments

· Slow Down : Stop rushing and allow time to take in what the world has for you

· Appreciate the POWER of Letting Go! (determine what you can control)

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