Handle Stress the Right Way
The 40s are arguably the prime of your life. Professionally, you’re either at your ideal position or certainly getting closer than ever before. Personally, you’re looking after your family – your spouse and kids, as well as your parents.
With so much going on in your life, however, it’s easy to understand how stress can overcome you, resulting in bodily aches and pains, among other physical and mental symptoms.
The Cause of Stress
Identifying what’s causing you stress might not be as easy as you think. While outside factors like work could play a part, your own personal insecurities or habits might be to blame as well.
A stress journal can help you see what’s causing all the stress in your life. Because it’s a personal journal, you can allow yourself complete honesty.
Cutting Out the Stress
Once you’ve figured out what’s stressing you out, you will have to deal with it. A good first step is just avoiding stressful situations. Know your limits and not take on more work than you can handle, plan your schedule more effectively, or simply take a less crowded route home from work – little things build up, so start with those.
Change the Situation
Some stressful situations can’t be avoided – but you can adapt to them. Expressing your feelings instead can lead to a more satisfactory solution to a problem, or even lead to collaborations that would make for an even better result. Being more proactive and assertive with your problems could also help change a stressful situation into something more manageable.
Working hard, both at home and in the office, is important to you – but it’s also important to place some priority on unwinding. Whether it’s as simple as taking a walk at least once a day, spending some time with friends and family or even taking up a new hobby, doing something to relax yourself can help greatly when it comes to dealing with stress.
Exercise and a balanced diet can greatly affect your stress. By ensuring that you get regular and nutritious meals, you keep your energy up throughout the day, and by getting regular exercise, you will find yourself generally feeling less lethargic.
How Not to Cope
Conversely, unhealthy habits like drinking too much and smoking will only add to your stress, despite seeming like temporary respites. Your deteriorating health will only make you feel more drained. Oversleeping won’t be of much help and neither would losing yourself for hours in front of your TV or computer. Anti-social behaviour on a whole only serves to isolate you, not so much from your stress, but from the people who can help.
Stress is something that everyone has to go through in their lives. But with all the things you’ve already accomplished and everything you have to look forward to, managing your stress is just as important as anything else in your life. Keep fit, stay relaxed and learn to adapt – and you’ll find that your burden will be weighing a little less on your shoulders.