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April is Stress Awareness Month

Stress Can Lead to Serious Health Issues, Both Physical and Mental Stress is a natural part of life that everyone will experience in some way several points throughout their lives. It can appear in many different forms, and some of these are not inherently bad. The stress that comes with planning a wedding or working a job you love means that you care about what you do and are excited about the outcome. On the other hand, some stress is bad and is the result of negative actions or life events, such as getting laid off or losing a loved one. Regardless, experiencing stress is a normal part of life, both good and bad. Every April, we celebrate Stress Awareness Month. Since stress is common, and everyone has some experience with this function, this month is a time that anyone can engage in. Stress is prevalent in the lives of most Americans. After all, the U.S. is one of the most stressed countries in the world. 55% of Americans reported feeling stress daily, putting the U.S. only four points behind the world leader Greece (59%) and 20 points over the world average (35%). At Lifeworks Counseling Center, we understand that…

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5 Ways to Ease Thanksgiving Stress

The holidays are upon us. The holiday season is simultaneously the happiest and most stressful season of the year. Between grocery shopping, cooking, and having family over it’s easy to see how stressful the holidays can be. You may believe there is just too much to plan and so many people to keep happy. If you are worried about this holiday season as Thanksgiving approaches, here are some tips to help you manage your stress this November. #1 Make a plan The most effective way to avoid surprises and stressors is to get organized and make a plan. Come up with a menu for Thanksgiving dinner. To make it fun you can even have your kids and partner help you plan it out. Having a plan reduces your stress because you aren’t scrambling around at the last minute to make something. Once you have planned your menu, make a list of what you need. Plan a day to knock out getting all the items on your list. Once you have your supplies, plan your cooking schedule. Cooking some Thanksgiving food ahead of time can greatly reduce the amount of preparation you have to do come Thanksgiving Day. #2 Ask for…

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Can Food Affect your Mood?  

What we put into our bodies has a lot to do with our health, how we look, and how we feel. But can it affect our mood? The answer is yes. If you have ever eaten a candy bar or had a milkshake, and then felt a sudden and intense wave of energy, you know that food can affect how you feel. However, there are other conditions in which food can impact your mood, from the specific foods you eat to your eating schedule and habits. The chemistry of various foods can chemically and physiologically alter changes in our brain’s structure, which can lead to significant influence of mood and behavior: #1 Unhealthy diet and depression Research has indicated that having an unhealthy diet for an extended period can put you at risk for increasing symptoms of depression. Although there isn’t really proof that an unhealthy diet causes depression, it has been found that the two things are correlated. #2 Sugar & stress When you feel stressed out or overcome by anxiety, it is natural for the body to crave sugar; sugar helps to energize the body while it is trying to cope with negative feelings. However, if you feel…

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6 tips to manage anxiety and stress 

A large number of adults suffer from anxiety and stress. It is only natural that we will endure stressful situations in our day to day lives, but unfortunately, some of us will have more difficulty in dealing with them. According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA), about 40 million people over the age of 18 suffer from anxiety. Stress not only affects people in their daily activities but also leaves them lying awake at night; the lack of sleep certainly doesn’t aid in stress and anxiety. If you are someone who has trouble dealing with stress and anxiety, keep on reading to learn about a few tips that can help you manage it more efficiently. #1 Become more mindful You will be surprised to learn the power you have over yourself when it comes to how you think. Try and practice being more mindful. Whenever you feel yourself overwhelmed with stress or anxiety, learn to talk yourself down instead of antagonizing yourself. Focus on thinking only positive thoughts. By learning to self-soothe, you will be amazed at what you are capable of. Remember positive self-talk phrases such as the following: “This too shall pass” “I will get…

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How to Help Your Teen When They’re Stressed

It’s no secret that being a teenager is tough, so how do you know whether your teen is just going through a phase or is stressed out? Many teenagers feel pressure to perform better in school, do well in extracurricular activities, build relationships with friends, and stay connected with loved ones. This can be extremely stressful for teenagers, in large part because they do not have the tools to deal with stress quite yet, which is where you come in. It is important to pay attention to your teen and take note of any changes in behavior or mood. While many teens do not respond to overbearing parents, leaving them to figure it out on their own is also not the answer. We encourage you to try and find a happy medium in order to help your teen deal with his or her stress. Perhaps the biggest source of tension and stress for teens is school, and rightfully so. According to a recent survey conducted by the American Psychology Association (APA), 13 to 17-year-olds today are experiencing higher stress levels than previous generations and higher than the APA considers healthy. Teens often feel pressure to get into a good college…

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How to manage work related stress

Whether the job you have is the one that you planned on since the day you were asked as a child, “what do you want to be when you grow up?” or just a job to pay the bills and take care of your family, work can be stressful. And stress is felt differently and at different levels for each person. Some people are much more sensitive to become anxious than others, and sometimes it can be difficult to manage. Deadlines, responsibilities, co-workers, clients, funds, the various aspects that can become overwhelming are endless. Stress can not only cause us mental and emotional anguish, but what many people don’t realize that it can also affect you physically. Since stress is somewhat of an unavoidable entity, it’s important that we at least know how to deal with it properly. According to the AIS, 40% of workers reported their jobs were either very or extremely stressful, while about 80% of workers reported feeling stress on the job, and almost half of those respondents said they need help in learning how to manage the stress. It only seems that over time, the stress in the workplace is growing, and unless you’re lucky enough…

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I’ve hit rock bottom. HELP!

Hitting rock bottom means different things for different people. Lifeworks counselors in the DFW have spent countless hours helping and researching the many ways any one person can find their way up from rock bottom.  Taking steps towards happiness is an initial step. At times, we forget what makes us happy, especially if we have not done it in a long time. Adding happiness to your life, even in small ways like a manicure or bird watching, can increase stability and predictability while decreasing chaos. The daily flow you follow is a big player in how you can break bad patterns and find positive ones to find your way up. Creating a flow that allows you to take a mental break will help promote positive thoughts. This takes time, so when you begin the therapeutic process, your counselor will set up a plan that works for you while adjusting to your needs as time passes. Throughout your days of finding your way back up, there will be issues that will arise and possibly nag at you. Some of these issues may help the therapeutic process, allowing you to see what it is you are holding on to. At this point,…

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