By Kristen Sohlman, HBA, MACP (Candidate), RP
Having to cope with a crisis is bound to happen at some point in our lives. Sometimes a crisis can be very stressful like going through a separation with a partner, being diagnosed with a serious health issue, a death of a loved one, or being laid off of work. At other times, a crisis can be less stressful like there being lots of traffic, having to wait in a long line at a store checkout, or even making decisions about every day activities.
How do you handle a crisis? Do you crumble under the stress, get angry, overwhelmed, or do you thrive on crisis and jump into action making decisions that you later regret? The good news is there a few things that can help make the distress of a stressful situation more tolerable so that you can eventually address and resolve the situation.
By Linda Kelly, MSW, RSW
"I just can’t seem to concentrate on anything. I have so many things to do and I keep forgetting about them."
Enter the voice of reason. Hey, you’re going through something that is difficult. Although you may not see the effects on the outside, your mind is busy doing important work trying to make sense of what you’re going through.
If you have just lost someone, or experienced major change, tragedy, shock, or disappointment, your mind needs to process it. And like a computer, doing all of this processing is going to draw on your energy, which means you will have less of yourself available to do things you normally do. You will be short on energy, probably have a change of appetite (more hungry because you’re aching to refuel, or less hungry because you’re under too much stress to digest food), and changes in sleep patterns (again, more if you’re using too much energy and less if you’re too worked up to relax your body).
By Seija Grant, MEd CP, RP (Qualifying)
Are you a caregiver for an elderly parent, dependent child or adult? Or do you practice caregiving as a career choice? Not identifying and dealing with your Caregiver Burnout can result in Compassion Fatigue (lack of empathy) and is now starting to be recognized as having similar symptoms to Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). It is important to pay attention to the signs and symptoms that your body is trying to tell you so that you can stop it in its tracks. So, what are the signs and symptoms? Well it starts with the body’s stress response—see below for some things to look out for.
By Kristen Sohlman, HBA, RP
The holiday season can bring about more family responsibilities, and along with it, additional feelings of stress. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed with holiday expectations, advertisements, and being a busy time of year. Unfortunately, the holiday season can bring about unhealthy stress management behaviour like overindulging in eating or drinking which makes one feel worse. In order to feel better this holiday season, there are better and healthier ways to make holiday stress more manageable.
By Kristen Sohlman, HBA, RP
Before you can begin to effectively master coping with stress within your life, it is important to learn more about how you are currently managing stress.
Take the Test! Below are some common ways of coping with stressful events. Mark those that are characteristic of your behaviour or that you use frequently.
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