With so many activities happening all around us, we often hear our friends or colleagues sigh and exclaim “I’m so stressed today!”.  Stress is a common concept nowadays that even kindergarten kids experience stress at home or in school.   You’d
sometimes wish that you were back in time when life was a lot simpler and stress was unheard of.

It’s a good thing that information about stress and how to deal with it is readily available for us.  The challenge is to use the information to overcome stress and cope with the hurdles of life the healthy way.

What do we know about stress?  According to an article in the AIS website (The American Institute of Stress), Stress is generally referred to as physical, mental, or emotional strain or tension” or “a condition or feeling experienced when a person perceives that demands exceed the personal and social resources the individual is able to mobilize.”  The causes of stress vary for each individual since it is based on individual perception. So to combat stress, we should start at identifying things that cause us stress and try to avoid it.  Sadly, most of the things that cause us stress are also the ones that we can’t live without like family and career.

So what do we do about it? Since stress is based on individual perception, the best way to battle stress is to have a healthy outlook in life. This will enable you to have a more objective view of your life and help you weed out which stress causing activities can be avoided.  For the ones we can’t avoid, learn to accept it and do the best you can to keep stress at bay.  Managing your time also helps minimize stressful incidents since it ensures that you don’t overload yourself with tasks. Another key prevention for stress is maintaining a healthy lifestyle which means getting enough sleep, eating a proper diet and taking time out to relax and have fun.

For the stress prone individual, a helpful insight is best expressed in a line from Niebuhr’s serenity prayer which goes “Grant me the courage to change the things I can change, the serenity to accept the things I can’t change, and the wisdom to know the difference.”

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