Cooperative Extension with Jean Bell 04/26/18


Reducing Stress

Life these days is stressful for everyone. Parents have to deal with work, housework, bills, kids, and even illnesses and emergencies. Sometimes there just does not seem to be a lot of peaceful moments in life.  This can cause a lot of stress for kids and parents When parents are stressed, kids can pick up on the tension and become stressed themselves.  Kids may show stress by becoming whiny or clingy or more demanding. They may get easily frustrated and become upset by little things and changes in their daily routine. Kids may also not have any energy and not want to do things. This can even cause stress for the parents because the kids are behaving badly! Of course, adults react to stress in many of the same ways. There are ways for parents to take action to reduce their stress.  These suggestions may not remove the stressful events from daily life, but can help you cope and bring peace and calm to your home.

  • Consider your mental attitude. Reviewing the problems of the day will only cause stress. Think calm peaceful thoughts and let go of the bad thoughts. Don’t keep thinking about what you did wrong during the day, and wonder what you could have said or done differently. Find the positive in your day, and focus on that.
  • Use music to soothe and relax. Music can soothe frayed nerves. Studies have even shown that music can lower blood pressure, which can lessen your physical responses to stress. Think about the music you enjoy and that you find calming. If you love Christmas music, and it relaxes you listen to it any time of the year! Make it a point to listen to the music you find calming when you need to relax.
  • Don’t expect perfection from yourself or others. Some people can’t forgive themselves for a mistake or a not perfect response. Remind yourself that you are only human, and all humans make mistakes. Forgive yourself for mistakes and then take the steps to make it right.
  • Live life one day at a time. Many people have anxiety about the past and worry about the future. You can’t change the past (remember no one is perfect) and be confident that you can deal with whatever happens in the future. Many people find comfort and support in their faith. Just giving your problems to your higher power and letting go of worry about what has passed and what is to come can help you to deal with the present.
  • Eliminate the negative in your life. Study your environment and see if there is something irritating that can be improved. Maybe it is as simple as a door that doesn’t latch correctly which causes you irritation every time you try to lock it or never being able to find your keys when you leave the house. Look for solutions- get the door repaired and designate a place for your keys and develop the habit of always putting the keys there. When you deal with small irritations your stress level can decrease.
  • Take a mini break. Make time to do something just for yourself every day, It can be as simple as going for a walk, sitting down with a cup of coffee and a book, taking a bubble bath, playing a game with your kids. Just try to do something pleasant every day. Taking ten minutes for yourself can set the tone for the day, from stressful to relaxed.

Try to look at life positively. Remember that some parts of life can be managed, and some parts are out of your control. Recognizing this can reduce your stress levels, and this will make the atmosphere of your home happier for everyone in the family.

Vance County Schools 04/23/18