Is Stress Affecting Your Life?

In today’s society there seems to be more and more people experiencing negative health effects as a result of stress.  As human beings we are only physiologically programmed to deal with acute stress meaning stress that lasts for very short periods of time.  Unfortunately most people these days experience chronic (long term) stress as opposed to acute stress.  Our bodies are not geared to handle long term stress, thus we are seeing stress manifest as the cause of more and more illnesses.  Take the Stress Quiz Below to help you determine how stressed you really are.

Quick Stress Quiz

Check all that apply:

  • There are many people in my life making demands on my time and energy
  • I’m always in a hurry, and I’m often running late
  • I’m quick to notice loud noises and they irritate me a lot
  • I’m often caught off guard by events and demands
  • I often feel that I have no control over what’s happening to me
  • I usually keep my feelings to myself; it’s more important to get on with the job at hand
  • When someone else is talking, I try to hurry the conversation along. I sometimes finish sentences for others
  • I get impatient when I see something being done more slowly than I thin it can be done
  • I get very irritable if I am delayed or have to wait. I hate lineups and slow drivers
  • I do one (or all) of the following often: fiddle with my hair, scratch, touch my nose, shake my legs, tap my foot, or doodle
  • I like to be busy. I always carry something to do. If nothing’s’ planned for the evening or the weekend, I take work home
  • I am competitive by nature. People who know me well think of me as a hard-driving individual
  • I can stay alert and suppress fatigue long after most other people I know have packed it in
  • I thrive on deadlines. I like to worry at maximum speed and will do anything to make a delivery
  • I’d rather have the admiration of my friends and coworkers than their affection
  • I rarely have any time to myself
  • I know I should exercise more and eat better, but I don’t have time
  • When I’m under stress, I often have a cramp or a headache. Other times I’ve felt nauseated, dizzy, or faint, or broken out in a rash
  • I have trouble going to sleep. I can’t turn off my mind after a busy day
  • I eat quickly, and I often eat and read at the same time. On workdays, I either eat at my desk or skip lunch altogether. Sometimes I get indigestion.
If you answered yes fewer to 10 times: It is unlikely stress in dominating your life at the moment

If you answered yes between 11 and 15 times: We recommend you adopt some new stress management techniques (see below).

If you answered yes more than 15 times: Stress is likely having a negative effect on your life and we recommend you adopt some new stress management techniques (see below).

Reference: Power Over Stress: 35 Quick Prescriptions for Mastering the Stress in Your Life, Dr. Kenford Nedd.

Easy Stress Coping Techniques

If your score was 10 or above then here are a few general techniques to help you deal with stress.

  1. Make sure you get enough sleep, 7-8 hrs per day
  2. Eat 3 balanced nutritious meals a day
  3. Drink at least 2L of water per day
  4. Exercise – at least 3 or more times per week
  5. Relax  – through conscious breathing, mediation, tai chi, yoga etc.
  6. Live in the present moment
  7. Learn to say no
  8. Laugh
  9. Sing
  10.  Go Dancing
  11.  Walk on the grass with no shoes on
  12.  Do at least one thing you enjoy for yourself each day
  13.  Get up fifteen minutes earlier in the morning to avoid rushing
  14.  Prioritize projects and daily tasks
  15.  Go outside
  16.  Talk with friends/family
  17.  Live within your budget
  18.  Visit a Naturopathic Physician to get some great ideas on how to support your mind, body and spirit during stressful times.
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