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You Could be Stressing…More Than You Know

You Could be Stressing…More Than You Know

Whether your status is single, single mom, or married with kids, you probably experience multiple demands on your schedule every day.  Those demands may be your work, spouse, children, parents, or simply household duties (yes, running a household can be very demanding).  You could also be dealing with issues stemming from finances, heath, relationships, death, or divorce.   Too often, lofty demands and constant issues produce stress.   Stress affects everyone, however working moms (along with teens and seniors) are most likely to have more stress.  That’s because working moms have the responsibility of two jobs (this isn’t to say that other groups can’t have a high amount of stress).  According to a study by the Families Work Institute, nearly 50 percent of American women say they don’t have enough free time, which can also bring about additional stress.

Stress develops whenever we are faced with a challenge or pressure.  The challenge or pressure can be positive (such as planning your wedding) or it can negative (such as working for a turbulent boss).  Your body reacts to stress and it produces hormones, adrenaline, and cortisol.  When faced constant stress, (without relief or relaxation) it disrupts your body’s natural process.  Elevated cortisol over the long term consistently produces glucose, leading to increased blood sugar levels and can lead to long-term illness.

Unfortunately, high amounts of stress can go undetected.  Many women are under tremendous amounts of stress and they don’t realize it.  Stress impacts people differently but it can affect your body, your mood.  Most importantly, too much stress can cause strokes and heart attacks.

It’s good to know the signs of stress:

Sleep deprivation

Headache

Muscle tension

Fatigue

Chest pain

Anxiety

Irritability

Depression

Overeating

Under-eating

Some stress is a part of life so managing it is imperative.  How you cope with stress will dictate whether or not it will have a negative effect on you.  There are things you can do to help you handle stress and prevent it from making you sick. Try these tips to keep stress in check:

Exercise, meditation, yoga, relaxation, take deep breaths, stretch, take a bath, get enough sleep, get organized, set limits (learn to say no), and ask for help.

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