Christians Against Drunk Driving

Stress Reducing Strategies
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Prolonged stress can wear you down and produce burnout. It can lead to physical problems, such as migraine headaches, ulcers, high blood pressure, or serious alcohol illnesses. The solution is to acknowledge the stress then learn to manage and channel it. Become attuned to your body and emotions. Why are you upset?
 
1. Exercise regularly. Experts say that exercise is one of the best ways to reduce stress, relax muscles, and promote a sense of well-being.
 
2. Rest and renew your body and mind. Yoga is a great way to unwind, stretch and tone the muscles, and focus energy. Many people find that meditation and prayer are essential for relaxation and renewal.
 
3. Develop hobbies and interests. Hobbies can release stress. Investigate volunteering opportunities in your community.
 
4. Use breathing methods. Deep breathing reduces stress and energizes the body. Begin sitting or standing up straight, breathe through your nose, fill your lungs completely, push out your abdomen, and exhale slowly and fully. 
 
5. The comfort of family and friends can help you sort out your problems. Support groups can help you cope with stress. Expressing your feelings, fears, and problems to people you trust.
 
6. Exercise and stretch the mind. Mental exercise can refresh and stimulate your entire life. Reading, doing crossword puzzles, and playing board games renew the spirit and stretch the mind. Attend lectures, take workshops, and go to seminars.
 
7. Create balance in your life. Some people must recognize the importance of balance between work and play in their lives. Learn to say no to things that do not enrich your life or the lives of others.
 
8. Develop a sense of humor. Laughing produces endorphins, natural chemicals that also increases oxygen flow to the brain and causes other positive physiological changes.
 
9. Plan, don't worry. Leading a disorganized life is stressful. Write down what has to be done each day; don't rely on your memory. Worrying is stressful and this can deplete your energy.
 
10. Assertive communication. It helps you solve problems rather than build resentment and anger.
 
11. Keep a log or a prayer journal. It is helpful in gaining insight into the types of situations that are stressful for you and how you respond to them.
 
12. Get professional help. Call the A.A. toll free hotline to find a 12 step meeting in your area, go to a health or counseling center, or in extreme cases admit yourself into a mental health department.