It’s no surprise stress is a major issue affecting most of the US population. Stress is “a state of mental or emotional strain or tension resulting from adverse or very demanding circumstances.” We can all agree that we have some level of stress in our lives. Busy schedules, kids, careers, finances, health concerns and the list goes on. How you handle stress depends on your personality, your past experiences and your current situation.

  • It’s estimated that 75-90% of all doctor visits are due to stress related complaints.
  • 77% of Americans are stressed by at least one thing at work.
  • 76% about money.
  • 73% by family responsibilities.

 

Chronic stress can lead to high blood pressure, lowered infertility, weak immune system, heart problems, stomach problems, weight gain and decreased concentration. As always the list goes on. Any of these sound familiar?

 

Stressors hit people in different ways so there is no single solution, but there are many ways to manage it:

  • 48% of adults exercise/ walk to manage stress.
  • Schedule “me” time. 31% relax with a hobby, 35% play video games, 49% listen to music.
  • Laugh it off. “If stress burned calories, I’d be a supermodel!”.Children laugh 300x a day. Adults chuckle 15x a day.
  • Organize. A cluttered environment can affect your mood and productivity. Get the family to help!
  • Take charge. Feeling out of control is a top stressor. Focus on what you can control and forget about the uncontrollable.
  • Just Breathe. Take a couple deep breaths to calm yourself.

 

Low stress levels can lead to better sleep, more energy, positive mood, healthy immune system, increased productivity and less doctor visits. It’s worth taking the time to walk, de-clutter, organize and LAUGH!

 

Submitted by: Megan Swenson, Certified Wellness Coach at St. Croix Regional Medical Center

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