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Coping With Stress
From: The Mental Fitness Center

Stress doesn't just affect your mood or temperment, it effects your entire body - preying upon system after system. Left untreated or unmanaged for any length of time it acts upon your health as any other disease would.

So, it goes without saying that feeling stressed isn't something to take lightly. Don't ignore it, hoping it will go away on it's own - it most definitely hasn't the decency to do that!

First you should know the warning signs of stress. We often blame a myriad of other things before we finally break down and give stress it's due. "I've just been too busy.", "I'm a little under the weather.", "I'm not up to par.", "Must be coming down with something.", and my favorite "I'm just not myself lately."

Of course, the reason we label it so many different ways is the fact that it feels so many different ways. Stress causes you to feel under the weather, totally under par, as though you're coming down with something and you most definitely don't feel like yourself.


1. Headaches. You'll find yourself reaching for your pain reliever more frequently.

2. Tension and tightness in your muscles, especially your neck. Back to the medicine cabinet.

3. Irritability. People may accuse you of biting their heads off, and more likely than not, you'll be completely aware that you did just that! Most of us know when we're "grouchy", we're just uncertain as to why we're "grouchy". And, of course, this leads to more stress, more headaches and more tension.

4. Your sleep will be anything but sweet. It'll take longer to find sleep, and if you're lucky enough to find it, you won't have it for long. Wakefulness and restlessness haunt the "stressed" individual. It's as though the mind says, "No time for that, I've got WAY to much to fret about! How can I be expected to get my grouch on tomorrow if I'm rested?!"

5. Your digestive system will be as foul as your worst mood. Foods that were once counted amongst your friends will become your arch enemies. And you'll learn just how fast you can bond with a bottle of the pink stuff.

6. Inability to concentrate. The mind, because it's so completely unrested will fail you time and time again. You'll forget things (and not just your keys or glasses). You'll find yourself hunting frantically for a single word or name. It's as though you type in search criteria in your mental search engine and it comes up with FILE NOT FOUND again and again and again.

It's actually a wonder that "grouchy" is as bad as we get!

But now we know what our problem is. We can do something about it and "feel like ourself again". Stress can be thought of as a message from our central nervous system. It's telling us that enough is most definitely enough, and if we don't provide some relief, it's going down and it'll take every other system down with it.

Page 2: Relief!

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