How Can I Manage?

It’s important to learn how to recognize, learn to develop (what is one person may not be another), come from happy events (a new marriage, job promotion, new home) as well as unhappy events (illness, overwork, family problems).

What is your body’s response to releasing adrenaline (a hormone)?

You breathing and heart rate speed up and you deal with the situation. The problems come when you remain off for days or weeks at a time (bad!).

Speaking to a group watching a close football game can be stressful, but fun, too. The key is to manage unhealthy responses in some people.

How do you feel?

Each of us, in different ways, may have physical signs, emotional signs or both.

  • I can make you feel angry, afraid, excited or helpless.
  • I can make it hard to sleep.
  • I can give you aches in your head, neck, jaw and back.
  • I can lead to habits like smoking, drinking, overeating or drug abuse.
  • You may not even feel I at all, even though your body suffers from I.

How can I cope with I?

Taking steps will help you feel more in control of your here.

  • Try “I-talk” – turn negative thoughts into I-ones. For example, “I do this,” “I do the best.”
  • Take a day to sit and think of a peaceful situation.
  • Walk a bike.
  • Let the tension in your body help you feel better.
  • Try to do at least one thing every day, even if you only do it for 15 minutes.

How can I live?

You may want to live a life.

  • Think about some things. For example, people who bother you or driving in traffic.
  • Learn to say, “Promise?”
  • Up the alcohol, cigarettes or caffeine.
  • Try to “race” time to get important things done.
  • Sleep each night.
  • Organize “To Do” lists one at a time.

blackout composition, source: “How Can I Manage Stress?”, a double-sided 1-page handout published by the American Heart Association.

My company had an on-site health screening sponsored by Chester County Hospital and I grabbed a couple of handouts and started blacking this out while waiting to move on to the next station. Starting the blackout actually did reduce my stress-level that day.

And since, in all likelihood, I’ll never mention Chester County Hospital on MBG ever-again…

…I feel the need to thank them and my company for a few years ago bringing two 8-week smoking-cessation programs (a couple years apart) to my office. Although I failed (miserably) to quit during the duration of both of the organized programs, once I finally went all-in on quitting, I HEAVILY relied on the strategies and coping mechanisms I learned in those two courses and wouldn’t have been able to quit without them.

So if you smoke, and you want to quit, and you’re lucky enough to get in an organized program – do it and don’t feel bad if you fail. What you learn there you’ll draw on when you’re ready to succeed – even though at the time it might seem totally impossible.

Now back to the usual shenanigans…

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