4 Tips for Stress Management
Over the past two decades, research has demonstrated that stress can significantly increase the risk of illness, disease and mental health; from the common cold to cancer, heart disease, anxiety and depression. Stress can affect the mind, body and spirit.
What is stress?
Stress is your reaction to what is happening to you. Your thoughts and beliefs about stress and your perception can influence your health. Stress alone is not the only factor that determines outcome. It is also how you perceive and cope with the stress that affects well-being.
How you think about stress matters. You can change your thought processes and in so doing, change your life.
4 Tips to Help Manage Stress
Learning effective coping skills can help you avoid or reduce the negative consequences of stress on your health and well-being. Here are 4 tips for managing stress provided by stress management expert psychologist Dr. Angela Bisignano:
- Develop a positive attitude. Being aware of how you are thinking and what you are thinking about can greatly influence your mood. Practice dwelling on things that are good. Count your blessings. Be grateful for what you have. Current research in neuropsychology shows that by thinking more positively, we can change the neurochemistry in our brains. We can actually rewire our brains, so we are thinking and feeling better.
- Practice mindfulness. Practicing mindfulness can help you to stay present in the moment. It can give you the space to reflect on your feelings, thoughts, senses and the environment. Tuning into what is occurring in the present time can help you relax and give you peace of mind.
- Take a break. Give yourself permission to take a break. In our busy schedules, sometimes we forget to do this. Try sitting and reading a book. If you live near the ocean, lie on the sand and soak in the sun rays. Sit by a fire and have a cup of tea. Spend time in a garden enjoying nature. Stop and smell the roses. Resting is restorative to the mind, body and soul.
- Try diaphragmatic (belly) breathing. This type of breathing can help slow your heart rate, lower your blood pressure, heart beats per minute and reduce stress and anxiety. Under stress, we tend to hold our breath, use a shallow breath or hyperventilate. Slowing down and breathing deeply can help reduce stress.
You can’t always control what happens to you, but you can control how you react. Create the time on a regular basis to practice one or more of these helpful coping strategies to improve your health and wellbeing.
Clinical Psychologist Dr. Angela Bisignano can help you examine the stressors in your life, process your thoughts in a more positive way, and come up with more effective ways to manage or reduce the stress you are experiencing.
Dr. Bisignano’s office is located in Palos Verdes Estates in the South Bay of Los Angeles County; serving clients from the surrounding communities. She is passionate about empowering her clients to lead their best lives.