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Coping With Stress


Stress is something that we all deal with on a daily basis. No matter how hard we try, we can’t avoid it. Your recovery from trauma isn’t going to be without stress. So, it’s time we start learning as much as we can about stress so that we can use it to our advantage. Continue reading to learn more about how you can cope with stress in your recovery.

The Stress Test

If you’re feeling overwhelmed and stressed out, know that you are not alone. Everyone deals with stress, although some more healthily than others. The first step to using your stress to your advantage is recognizing how you deal with your stress. Ask yourself the questions below and truly think about your answers. This can give you a quick assessment to help you realize whether or not you need more practice in harnessing your stress and using it to your advantage.

  1. How do you unwind after the end of a long, tough day at work?
  2. Do you often lie awake at night thinking about everything you have to do tomorrow?
  3. How much time does it take for you to assess a situation and make a decision?
  4. How hard is it for you to ask for help?
  5. Do you feel like your energy is zapped after going over your daily to-do list?
  6. Is your concentration intact throughout the day?
  7. Do you consider yourself an irritable person?
  8. Where do you get your support from when you are overwhelmed?
  9. Do you manage your schedule well?
  10. How are you recognizing your stress level?

Good and Bad Stress

Most of the stress we think about and deal with is bad stress. This bad stress is called distress. When we are dealing with an abundance of distress, we often find ourselves feeling tired, lethargic, and overwhelmed. Distress keeps us from feeling well and doing our best. It’s not uncommon for people dealing with high amounts of distress to cope in unhealthy ways.

This could mean that you may skip meals so that you have extra time to complete a project, lash out at co-workers, or engage in self-defeating habits to control the stressful situation. It’s important to have a good sense of self-awareness when it comes to stress. Knowing what your triggers are helps you react in a healthier way when you feel stress coming on. Then, you’re able to redirect your distress into eustress.

Eustress is good stress. This isn’t the type of stress we often think of when we are bogged down with endless responsibilities. If you’re able to use your stress for good, you can benefit greatly from eustress. It can help motivate you and push you to be your best. Eustress is the happy medium between no stress at all and high amounts of distress. By using eustress to your advantage, you can strive to complete your goals.

Reducing Distress

In order to become a master at eustress, you must learn how to reduce your distress using healthy coping skills. Too often, people bottle up their distress and push it out of their mind. It doesn’t stay hidden forever, however. It will blow up at the most inconvenient moment. To help keep your distress low, it’s important to do a few things.

The first thing you can do to help reduce your overall distress is to make exercise a routine. This is important because it gives the distress a healthy thing to do. You can benefit greatly from going for a walk and just getting moving. If you’re able to, brief moments of intense exercise are also great at helping you get your stress out in a healthy way. Exercise can help you clear your head, making you feel more relaxed in the long run.

Eating healthy is another way to reduce distress. The food you eat is used as fuel for your body. If you are used to eating fast food that is extremely unhealthy, you aren’t nourishing your body in the proper way.

If you’re looking to reduce your distress, mindfulness is another great way to do so. You can practice mindfulness through a quick meditation or doing a few yoga poses. In whatever you decide to do, allow yourself to focus completely on the present moment. Don’t let your mind wander to the next thing you have to accomplish. Tell yourself that you deserve to be present and focus on yourself and your positive mindset. You need this time to help calm yourself down so that you can focus throughout the rest of the day.

Lastly, making sure you are engaging in deep breathing can help calm your mind and body to help you reduce distress. If you find yourself in an intense moment, check your body. How are you breathing? You might find yourself breathing short and shallow, or even holding your breath for extended amounts of time. Take 30 seconds to close your eyes and breathe deeply, in through your nose and out through your mouth. This helps to reset yourself and keep you calm.

The Guest House is here to help you learn how to cope with stress. We can help you reduce distress and use eustress to your advantage. Call us today at (855) 483-7800. Our trained and experienced staff cannot wait to speak with you and get you the help you need today. Call now for more information. You won’t be disappointed!