September 2012

De-stress during distress

Here are a couple of healthy coping mechanisms.

If you’re alive, you’re going to have stress in your life. It’s that simple. But sometimes life gets so stressful that you feel as if you could truly collapse beneath it all. I have been in constant stress overload before and simply lived in survival mode only to really collapse afterward; I have also had stretches of stress during which I let out my emotions and learned to use coping mechanisms that were healthy. I heartily recommend the latter.

Whether you have a relative in the hospital (or you, yourself, are very ill), you’ve lost a loved one, you’re struggling financially, or you’re experiencing other types of stress, here are a few mechanisms I would suggest for coping. Please feel free to add your own in the comments.

Relax. This will do wonders for your body and your mind. Obviously it’s a very difficult things to do, so you’ll have to force it. Set up an elaborate scene—a candlelit bath if you need it, complete with candles and music—and just soak. Take a nap, cuddling in your comforter, after some hot cocoa. Sleep does wonders for an aching spirit. Your body needs this. Neglecting our self-care is the first thing we do in survival mode, so make an effort to practice it instead.