Wednesday, May 19, 2010



Stress Management Tips

Are you showing signs of stress? Take this quiz and see how you fare!
Stress Test:
Y N Do you rarely worry about the future?
Y N Do you often get enough sleep to stay
alert during the day?
Y N Do you rarely become irritated over
basically insignificant matters?
Y N Do you feel content and satisfied most days?
Y N Do you rarely get headaches?
Y N Do you rarely drink beverages containing caffeine?
Y N Do you refrain from drinking alcoholic beverages?
Y N Would your friends say you cope with stress well?
Y N Do you exercise at least 3 times a week?
Y N Are you able to consistently "turn off"
your mind once you get into bed?
Y N Do you practice a daily relaxation technique
for at least 15 minutes?
Y N Do you get satisfaction from small joys
and simple pleasures of life?
Y N Do you rarely get ill?
The more "yes" answers, the more likely you are to be managing stress to your
satisfaction. If you are consistently having difficulty, try to make changes in
your lifestyle and see if it makes a difference (see "How to De-Stress"). If
those changes don't work or you would like some help, make an appointment to see
a counselor, health educator or medical provider. (Also, check out the readings
recommended by our Mental Health counselors: Self-help books.)
Did you know . . .
70-80% of all disease and illness is stress-related, including the common cold,
migraines, heart disese, insomnia, and headaches?
Stress and Wellness
The Merriam Webster dictionary defines "stress" as a "factor that induces bodily
or mental tension." Some degree of stress is inevitable in life, but too much
negatively affects al the dimensions of wellness including body, relationships,
self-image, academic/work, and emotional well-being. The good news, though, is
that there are proven ways to deal with stress.
The Last Straw!
Think of the saying "It was the straw that broke the camel's back." It wasn't
the weight (or stress) of that final straw that caused the break, but the
accumulation of many separate straws. It's the same with stress. So, the first
thing to do if you regularly feel stressed is to DO LESS! Simplify. Set
priorities. Prevent getting to the breaking point.
Next, do something to relax every day. Proven techniques include deep breathing,
meditation, tai chi, yoga, journaling, prayer, guided imagery, and/or vigorous
exercise. These all help reduce stimulation to the body and mind and regain a
deep sense of peace and well-being. Think of them as taking "straws" off the
camel's back so there is more room for more without breaking.
How to "De-Stress"
Get more rest.
Develop a weekly study schedule.
Learn to manage time more effectively.
Exercise regularly.
Do less. Simplify. Set priorities.
Cut down on drinking alcohol (or don't drink at all).
Reduce caffeine consumption.
Practice a relaxation technique at least 15 min./day.
Make an appointment with a health educator or counselor to learn effective
stress management skills.
Get information on a yoga, tai chi, or medication class.
Laugh, laugh, laugh, laugh!
On Campus:
Student Health Care Center, Clinical Services. Call 392-1161, enter 8 for
appointment desk.
Health Education Office, Infirmary Building, Room 302, 392-1161 ext. 4281.
Student Mental Health, Infirmary, 392-1171
University Counseling Center, 301 Peabody, 392-1575,
Reitz Union Leisure Courses: tai chi, yoga & massage, 392-1655,
Take a UF class: SDS 3482, "Stress and Anxiety Management".
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