For adults & seniors
SStress is an automatic physical, mental, and emotional response to a challenging event and a normal part of everyone’s life. When channeled positively, stress can lead to growth, action, and change. However, negative stress can reduce your quality of life.
Stress in daily life has positive connotations when linked to activities or situations such as marriage, promotions at work, a child’s birth, winning money, and graduation. Positive stress overwhelms you and makes you proud of yourself and your friends.
However, stress connected to activities and situations such as divorce, injury, financial problems, or challenges at work has negative connotations. Instead of giving you a positive state of mind, negative stress is often associated with physical health problems such as headaches, upset stomach, and muscle tension, as well as psychological problems such as depression, anxiety, and burnout.
Generally, negative stress can be a temporary state linked to a temporary situation—for example, acute stress situations such as preparing for graduation examinations.
When the stressful situation lasts over time and produces negative stress, it becomes chronic stress, which we tend to ignore or smother. Left uncontrolled, chronic stress affects your health, your body, and your immune system.
Stress management consists of making changes to your life to accommodate recurring stressful situations, prevent stress by practicing self-care and relaxation, and manage your response to stressful situations when they occur.
Negative Stress at Work
In developed countries, assuming 8 hours of sleep per night, individuals spend an average of 35% of their waking hours at work during a 50-year period. In those countries, numerous studies show that job stress is far and away the major source of stress for adults and has escalated progressively over the past few decades. Increased levels of job stress, defined by the perception of having little control but numerous demands, are associated with increased rates of heart attack, hypertension, and health disorders.
Stress Management Techniques
There are many physical, mental, social, intellectual, and environmental techniques to reduce stress in your life. Althalia’s health coaches provide a full range of stress management strategies, including:
- Acupuncture: Inserting extremely thin needles into your skin at strategic points can boost your body’s natural painkillers and increase blood flow.
- Counseling: Discussing life and health-related stressors with a medical professional can help you to develop coping skills for challenging situations.
- Deep breathing: Breathing with the muscle beneath your rib cage (i.e., the diaphragm) can establish a pattern of slower, deeper, and more-efficient breathing.
- Massage therapy: A trained, certified medical professional can manipulate the soft tissues of your body—muscle, connective tissue, tendons, ligaments and skin—by using varying degrees of pressure and movement.
- Meditation: Developing intentional focus—that is, minimizing random thoughts about the past or future—can help with relaxation and stress reduction.
- Mindfulness exercises: This form of meditation teaches you to be intensely aware of what you are sensing and feeling at every moment, without interpretation or judgment.
- Progressive muscle relaxation: Tensing and relaxing the muscle groups throughout your body can help you to calm anxious feelings.
- Resilience training: Learning to be more intentional about your perceptions can decrease your negative thoughts and help you to develop resilience: the ability to recover quickly from stress.
- Yoga: Various types of mind–body practices that combine a series of precise postures with controlled breathing can help to relax your mind as well as increase your strength and flexibility.
The chief goals of the Stress Management Program are:
- To provide the right assessment of the cause of stress
- To discover the right technique or mix of techniques and education to self-manage your stress
The program offers interventions with stress disorder specialists, typically psychologists, for the diagnosis of a stress disorder, as well as the choice techniques that can help you according to your personality and feelings the provider’s recommendations. It also affords recurring follow-ups with a health coach over the telephone or via video consultations to strengthen your motivation at times of the day when you feel overcome by stress.