Not all stress is bad, but long-term stress can lead to health problems. In fact, preventing and managing long-term stress can lower your risk for other conditions such as heart disease, obesity, high blood pressure, and depression.
You can prevent or reduce stress by planning ahead, deciding which tasks to do first, and preparing for stressful events. The U.S. Department of Health & Human Services website has a number of tips to manage stress, outlined below.
Some stress is hard to avoid. You can find ways to manage stress by:
- Noticing when you feel stressed
- Taking time to relax
- Getting active and eating healthy
- Talking to friends and family
How Does Interim Help Clients Learn to Manage Stress?
At Interim, clients are taught skills to cope with negative emotions and common life stressors. Because a mental illness can affect the way we think act and feel, recognizing and using tools to manage the emotional response to stress and mitigating symptoms can avert a mental health crisis. Clients also learn about the importance of physical health and nutrition as it relates to their mental health. While stress is a normal part of life, excessive stress can exacerbate an existing mental illness.
Mario Ramirez, Wellness Navigator for the Assertive Community Treatment Program, summarized his experience at Bridge House:
“Interim has taught me how to control my feelings and my mood through cognitive behavioral therapy. I honestly feel that my past life experiences are an asset to the agency because I can show people that recovery is possible… With mental health, you have to have patience. I have to have patience… If you do the same thing every day, then eventually you’ll get better at it… That’s how I believe that our mind works… Being at Bridge House, I learned that when you use a pencil it gets dull, and then you have to sharpen it. Well, that’s basically what I do – I sharpen my pencil.”
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