Healthy relationships provide us with the positive support necessary to cope with stress and problems that are a natural part of life. Without that support, the mind/body balance is disrupted and can negatively affect our physical health.
Life brings many joys and many challenges. Having a healthy support system helps us cope with changes in a positive way. Without effective coping mechanisms, stress can contribute to many chronic health problems, like obesity, heart disease, and diabetes. People experiencing high levels of stress can exhibit physical/emotional symptoms like:
- Chest pain
- Sleep issues
Learning to manage stress is just as important as to optimal health as good nutrition and exercise. When life gets hectic, try some of the following ideas to decompress and relax:
- Call a supportive friend. Internalizing worries and problems only magnifies their negative affect on your health.
- Try some deep breathing, yoga or meditation to help refocus and relax.
- Reach out to your funniest friends- laughter has been shown to improve mood and relieve stress.
- Always schedule time for yourself- reading, listening to music, knitting- make time for your favorite hobby.
- Get moving- exercise has so many health benefits!
Don’t be afraid to ask for help. Everyone processes stress differently. Recognize that surrounding yourself with positive, encouraging relationships can help improve your long-term health.