girl struggling to manage stress


Frazzles, Tired, Stressed, Angry, Pressure….. Moving, Wedding, Worry, Insomnia….. Meditation, Exercise, Relax. How do you manage stress?

What is Stress?

When the body is under stress, it puts the body into a “fight or flight” response because a threat has been perceived. One of the physiological changes that accompanies stress is a burst of hormones that increases the heart rate and blood pressure. This is a good thing when the threat is real, such as being attacked by a dog or getting into a car accident.  However, when there is chronic stress, health problems, such as heart disease, high blood pressure, and cancer, can arise.  This can lead to heart attack, stroke, and eventually, death. You can help alleviate the effects of stress and possibly prevent future health problems by learning how to manage stress

Identify the Sources of Stress

The first place to start is to identify the triggers that make you feel angry, tense, worried, or irritable.  It may be job related, relationship related, financially related, or just as simple as becoming irritated when waiting in line.  Even events that are supposed to be happy can cause related stress. This includes things like getting married, starting a new job, or buying a new house.

Tips to Relieve Stress

Once you identify the triggers, you can work toward accepting the events that you cannot change and changing those that you can.  For example, if stress is keeping you up at night, try turning off the tv an hour before bed, keeping a worry journal at your bedside, and letting your mind wind down before falling asleep.  If you wake up in the middle of the night, write down what is bothering you and let it go.

Some people find relief from deep breathing techniques like tai chi, yoga, meditation, or progressive muscle relaxation.  Other relaxation techniques include: taking a bath, listening to music, dancing, getting a massage or watching comedic television or movies. In addition, maintaining a healthy lifestyle can help reduce stress and release endorphins, which make you feel good. This includes eating healthy, exercising regularly, and getting at least eight hours of sleep a night.

Stress is an inevitable part of living, but the way we deal with stressors is up to us.  Try making a stress management plan and learning to relax with activities that you enjoy. It can help you deal with stress more effectively and possibly prolong your life.                                                                                     


Mike Pennington

Mike Pennington

Michael Pennington is a physical therapist and the owner of Turning Point Physical Therapy, which is located in beautiful southern Oregon. He is a loving husband, father of six and a master of his trade. Before studying at Pacific University, Michael earned his Eagle Scout and served a full-time 2 year mission in South Africa. He is as accomplished as he is hard working. All of his experiences culminate together at his clinic and are evident in his patient care.
Mike Pennington

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