Strategies to Reduce Stress and Statistics Showing We’re Not Alone In Feeling It

In a recent Linked In Post and in an interview with The 32789, a Winter Park-based newsletter, I shared shocking statistics about rates of stress – and several strategies to help you deal more effectively with it. Click the link above for article – or keep reading below. I hope you’ll find comfort in knowing you are not alone and ways to help mitigate your stress.

If you’ve found yourself worrying more, feeling extra irritable or your anxiety level is up, you’re not alone. More than a quarter of U.S. adults say they’re so stressed they can’t function, according to a late 2022 Harris Poll. And a 2023 report from the American Institute of Stress showed that negative impacts of stress included:

·     94% of workers report feeling stress at work.
·     77% report stress affects their physical health.
·     73% report stress impacts their mental health.

The unusual combination of factors in our post-pandemic America (mass shootings, war, political upheaval, the omnipresence of social media, etc.) led the APA (American Psychological Association) to issue a warning: “We are facing a national mental health crisis that could yield serious health and social consequences for years to come.” As a therapist, I am seeing this already. People who have coped well, folks who never had anxiety or depression, are buckling under the weight of anxiety and uncertainty.

While there is no magic pill or quick fix, we can all step up our mental health-care prevention routines. Just as we floss our teeth and try to eat right, we need to attend to our mental health care and to that of our children. What is beneficial for adults (exercise, human connections, meditation, disconnection from devices, more sleep, etc.) is great for kids of all ages too. Fortunately, there are many evidence-based practices that help us cope, build resilience and reduce stress — and they don’t necessarily require medication.

In a recent interview with #The32789, a Winter Park-based newsletter, I offered several self-care strategies. These are helpful not just in May, Mental Health Awareness Month, but every month – every day actually. And if it all becomes too much, professional help is available. We have great therapists in Central Florida and with tele-health services abounding, you needn’t even leave home.

Stress is inevitable. Modern life has never been more challenging but there is much we can do to prevent burn out – or worse. As one of my favorite aphorisms states: We can’t stop the waves, but we can learn to surf.

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