Stress – Do you know what it is doing?

 

In today’s fast-paced world, where we might be juggling multiple demands, it’s easy to come under stress. In the right situation it can be positive, providing the motivation, drive and energy to perform at our peak. But if the body can’t switch off its response to stress, there can be negative consequences.

 

As we get older, coping with stress becomes more difficult and we find that we have less resilience. Chronic stress impairs our health and wellbeing, and may even reduce our longevity. This is mainly through unhealthy behavior, which people turn to in times of stress, such as unhealthy eating, increased drinking and smoking.  Instead of resorting to these negative actions, what can we do?

 

Dr. Michelle Dossett, a Harvard graduated specialist at the Benson-Henry Institute for Mind Body Medicine, suggests first talking to your loved ones about your concerns. This can help you have some piece of mind about your current situation. She also suggests getting a physical check-up, as stress can have physical impact on your body that you may be unaware of.

 

Keeping a healthy diet and getting plenty of exercise are both equally important. Why not organise a catch up with a friend or family member that involves walking to a coffee shop or the beach? Thirty minutes of walking can turn a chore into something you look forward to everyday. Other things to try are: tennis, swimming, pilates, yoga, and dancing. Why not ask your partner, put on your favourite record, and dance the night away? All these exercises are fun, social ways of exercising your whole body – you can’t go wrong.

 

It is also important to pursue activities that bring you joy – reading a book, gardening, socialising with friends and family or simply enjoying a cup of tea outside in the sun. Little things like these can make a significant difference in how you can live a balanced lifestyle and cope with stress.

 

What about videogames? Have you seen your grandchildren (or children) playing video games on their computer or other devices? Recent studies have shown that joining in to play these games has helped Australians deal with health issues such as stress and dementia. Mind games on your smartphone or iPad are great examples of these. What a great way to connect with family members and have a little fun at the same time. It can’t hurt to try?

 

Southern Plus recently launched the ‘Hospital to Home’ program to encourage a positive return to home and to good health as quickly as possible.  This settling service enables clients to be picked up from hospital and “settled” in at home by their dedicate support worker.  We will also ensure their home is ready for them to return, ensuring small touches like cleaning, bed making and shopping is completed to make the home coming a less stressful experience.
If you would like to know more about our program, please call Client Connect on 1300 000 161 or email info@scrosswa.org.au

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