October 2014 Newsletter

November 23, 2014  |  By  | 

Stress may be inevitable. But how you deal with it is largely up to you. Here are some tools to help you manage the stress in your life. It seems like everyone is stressed out these days - from your co - workers, to your friends, to the person standing next to you in line. Stress, by itself, isn't necessarily bad. Low or even moderate amounts of stress can be good for us, provided we manage it in healthy ways. But poorly managed stress can take a toll. Heart disease, fatigue, and obesity are just a few of the po- tential consequences. If stress is bothering you, consider the following 10 ways to regain control: 1. Recognize your symptoms. Your signs of stress may be different from someone else's. Some people get an- gry. Others have trouble concentrating or making deci- sions. Some feel worried or depressed. For some, stress leads to physical symptoms such as headache, back pain, upset stomach, or trouble sleeping. 2. Identify the sources. What situations trigger your stress? Among other things, your stress may be linked to your family, health, work, or personal relationships. Keep in mind that stress is often caused by a change in your life, negative or positive. Marriage, divorce, job loss, or a promotion may all increase stress. 3. Evaluate your coping strategies. Examine the ways in which you deal with situations that cause you stress. Responses like smoking, drinking alcohol, or eating too much may feel good in the short run, but they can cause long - term harm. 4. Learn to say 'no.' Sometimes the best way to deal with unnecessary stress is to avoid it. Know your limits, and refuse to take on more responsibilities than you can han- dle. 5. Plan ahead. Don't let your to - do list get out of control. Think about your day, and decide which tasks are the most important. Do those items first. Let other tasks drop to the bottom of - or even off - your list. 6. Create time to relax. It's not always easy, but it's im- portant to make time for yourself. Take vacations or oth- er breaks. Make time to read a good book, listen to mu- sic, watch a comedy, or just have a warm cup of tea. Some people find deep breathing exercises helpful for relieving stress. 7. Exercise regularly. A brisk walk, a bike ride, and a trip to the gym are just some of the physical activities that can help prevent or reduce stress. Aim to get 2 hours and 30 minutes of exercise each week. Talk to your doc- tor before increasing your activity level. 8. Eat healthfully. Eating balanced, nutritious meals throughout the day will help you cope with stress by keeping you energized and focused. Also, cut back on caffeine. You'll feel more relaxed and will likely sleep better. 9. Talk to family and friends. Simply talking with support- ive people can often bring stress relief, even if the stress- ful situation doesn't change. By the same token, limit the time you spend with people who only add to your stress. 10. Get help. If stress seems overwhelming, consider talking to a mental - health professional. He or she can offer healthy stress - busting techniques. Take the time to peruse this list, reflect and make a con- scious effort to do one or more of these life - changing activities. 10 Ways to Simplify Your Life and Dial Down Stress Levels By Ginny Greene, Editor of Optum Health Online Newsletter Don’t forget to submit your photos for Q4’s Stress Reliever Photo Contest . You can submit up to five photos of yourself in "de - stress mode". Because we are voting, the more bizarre the better. We only ask that your photos be “appropriate". Showcasing DB&A logoed gear could earn a few "brownie" points. We will vote on the best stress relieving photo and announce the winners on during the Annual Meeting. Upload photos to http://www.dropitto.me/ DBAStories. The password is "showandtell". Please re - save the photos with your full name. Q4 Stress Reliever Photo Contest

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