November 6 2012 Editor Assistance Newsletter
It looks like the changes I made did put a leash on our now-friendly 80-Legs creature, which is good. Hopefully it will waddle off to visit other locations now :). I'll keep an eye on the forums over the coming days. I'll also be looking at upgrading our SQL version in the next week or so, which should also give us a speed boost. I'll do a test on my own private forum first to make sure it works smoothly, before I do it to ours :).
One of the talks we had at our Plum Island retreat was on Stress Management. I covered Insomnia in message #293, so this is the second half of that talk. I'll be taking an entire class on Stress Management in January, as part of my degree program, so I'll be sure to share all my notes from that as well!
Stress as a concept is a healthy thing in life. It inspires us to reach for goals, to challenge ourselves, and to build strength. There's a balance, of course. Too little stress and we can become unable to cope with even minor hiccups of life. Too much stress, and we burn our bodies out.
Our systems were designed to run from sabre-toothed tigers. But when the stress is a rough day at work, or financial troubles, having that adrenaline and cortisol flooding our body causes it physical harm. It damages our ability to handle issues and think clearly. So the problems snowball.
Here are some tips we came up with to help reduce your body's stress hormone level. Aim to work these into your daily routine!
* Ample sleep. We covered this in #293, and it's critical to give it attention. The better you sleep, the better you can cope with *everything* in life. Even small improvements reap large rewards.
* Healthy food. Avoid sugars, trans-fats, and preservatives. Aim as much as you can for natural, whole, and fresh. Yes, sometimes it's more expensive. Look at eating local foods in season, stocking up when there are sales, setting up container gardens in your windows, and clipping coupons.
* Ample water. Often we don't get enough hydration in our system.
* Breathe. When we get stressed we often shallow-breathe which reinforces the stress situation to our body. In comparison, deep breathing is a sign to our body to relax. Take in long, deep breaths.
* Build a relaxing atmosphere. Wear a fragrance that relaxes you. Breathe it in. Envision a pleasant retreat in your mind. Focus on its details. Wear clothes that comfort you. Sometimes even just a bracelet or ring can remind you of what is important in life.
* Help others. Doing volunteer work can put your own troubles in context, and realize just how much you do have already.
* Journal. The more you can release worries from your mind onto paper, the more you can look at them objectively.
* Build a supportive network. Have people around you who care for your dreams and goals and who buffer the other nay-sayers in the world.
* Be gentle with yourself. We are all human, we all have challenges and mistakes and hurdles. That is OK. Life has ups and downs. That is normal. Take a deep breath, accept that you're not perfect, and be content with your efforts.
I've posted this as a starting set of ideas here -
Please chime in with your own ideas, so we can all help each other reduce our stress levels! The more relaxed we are, the more capable we are of handling all of life's normal ups and downs. It all begins with a deep breath, and a smile.
Lisa Shea, owner
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