Don’t Let Stress and Anxiety Rule Your World
April is Stress Awareness Month
Although stress and anxiety often share some of the same emotional and physical symptoms, such as headaches, stomach distress, sleep loss and feelings of being overwhelmed, their origins are often different. Stress is typically a response to an external demand such as a deadline at work or school, whereas anxiety typically results internally where someone may feel intense feelings of overwhelm or dread in response to situations that are not actually life-threatening.
“Anxiety is a normal part of life, and is viewed as an adaptive quality,” says Bridget DeFiccio, Senior Vice-President of Integrated Health. “But when anxiety begins to impact your life, how you function on a daily basis, or causes you to avoid life events or situations, it is likely no longer at a normal level.”
Here are a few ways to reduce stress and anxiety in your life:
- Focused, deep breathing can help calm you.
- Aromatherapy, whether in the form of oil, incense or candles can help. Lavender or chamomile are best.
- Go for a walk or do 15 minutes of yoga.
- Write down your thoughts in a journal.
- Learn to manage what triggers your stress or anxiety. Caffeine, alcohol, stress on the job or even driving, can all make stress worse.
If you think your anxiety is greater than it should be, you can reach out for help. There are numerous resources online, in addition to in person options for counseling resources in the community. Evidence-based practices such as Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and Exposure Therapy help to alleviate feelings of anxiety. At times, counseling along with the use of medications may be beneficial for managing the stress and anxiety. Clinicians in our Counseling & Wellness Centers can help you work towards setting goals for mental wellness. Call our main number at 844-4-ACENDA (844-422-3632) for more information.