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04 Sep

Stress Management: The Healthy Way

Stress is an inevitable aspect of life, especially in today’s fast paced environment. Learning how to reduce, prevent, and cope with stress is one of the greatest ways to improve quality of life and increase happiness.

In your daily life, you may experience stress regarding a variety of aspects. Learning how to prioritize what matters the most can help to diminish the background noise and really focus on completing important tasks, so that the rest of the time can be spent engaged in activities that bring joy and balance to life.

One of the first steps in stress management is actually addressing direct stressors. Many of us walk around with a vague feeling of anxiety or urgency without really understanding why. By learning which tasks and people produce stress, it is easier to act accordingly. Increasingly, people are finding that personal attitudes and behavior contribute to high levels of stress. This in itself can be a good thing, as long as people are willing to make adjustments to their mental processes and behavior.

Family
From raising kids to communicating with an equally-stressed and busy partner, family can often seem more like a task than a support system. Find ways to equally divide household chores and obligations to take time for relaxation. It is also important to remember that spending time with children and partners can be more important than having a spotless home or a five-course meal every night. Lastly, consider couples counseling or family therapy if dysfunctional communication or behavior contribute to stress on familial relationships.

Work
Changing work habits can work wonders to reduce stress and increase quality of life. Evaluate your position often. Do you procrastinate? Are you happy with what you are doing? While many tasks that are required at your job are non-negotiable, how you choose to do these tasks and the attitude you adopt can have lasting effects on your daily life. If the tasks in your job seem insurmountable, or lead to depression or extreme anxiety, consider a career change or sending out resumes to seek a new position that may be a better fit.

Finances
One of the most common stressors is finance. Financial literacy is key to maintaining a happy life. Use free online resources, such as www.financialliteracymonth.com,to learn how to best manage finances, pay bills, control debt, and save for retirement and college expenses. The simplest—and possibly most important—tool for managing finances is living within your means. That may mean cutting back, moving to a smaller house, or buying a used car or appliance.

Health
Healthy lifestyles are often shoved to the wayside as people try to juggle everything at once. Learning how to make time for exercise and healthy eating can boost mood, productivity, happiness, and longevity. The best way to adopt a healthy lifestyle is to make it part of a routine. Wake up half an hour earlier to take a walk, or bike to work. Depending on circumstances, there are a variety of options to work in a gentle but effective exercise routine at least four times a week. The internet and cookbooks are also great resources that can help with finding easy and healthy recipes.

If you feel that your stress is taking over your life, consider any or all of these steps. West Valley Counseling provides stress management therapy throughout the San Fernando Valley, including Woodland Hills, Tarzana, Sherman Oaks, Hidden Hills, Burbank, Glendale, Calabases, and other communities of Los Angeles County.
For more information or to speak to one of our staff at the West Valley Counseling Center, please contact us at (818) 758-9450 or email us at info@westvalleycounseling.org

Also see Blog Post: Finding a Balance in Life

For more information or to speak to one of our staff at the West Valley Counseling Center, please contact us at (818) 758-9450 or email us at info@westvalleycounseling.org

West Valley Counseling Center is located at 19634 Ventura Blvd. Suite 212 Tarzana, CA 91356