People so often advice, “Don’t take stress, it will affect your health.” Well, no one likes to be stressed but it is not as easy as just flipping a switch and turning off the stress. But there are certainly some ways which help you to manage stress.
Stress is known to have a direct impact on our heart health. Several studies have proven that more stress leads to an increased risk of cardiovascular diseases. In a 2007 study, chronic stressors are discussed in terms of job stress, marital unhappiness, and burden of care-giving. These kinds of stress contribute to an increased risk of heart diseases.
This World Heart Day, let’s make an effort to take care of our heart health by managing our stress. To find out more about how to manage stress, Health Shots reached out to Dr Kamna Chhibber, a clinical psychologist at Fortis Healthcare and she suggested some ways to manage stress.
How to manage stress for good heart health?
1. Develop a problem-solving approach to reduce stress
Unsolved problems or finding problems in every situation instead of solutions can be a major reason for your stress. That is why it is important that we learn to change our perception of looking at things. “Take a problem-solving approach. The emotions in the situation can get you stuck with the problem instead of letting you search for the solution,” says Dr Chhibber. Say for example, your boss has increased your responsibilities, so instead of looking at it as an increase of workload, start to think of it as your boss’ trust in your capabilities.
2. Learn to accept certain situations
“If you find yourself getting stuck in cycles of overthinking, try to work towards seeking ways of being able to manage the thoughts. Address them or recognize that the situation may not be resolvable and build an acceptance of the same,” suggest Dr Chhibber. She adds that one needs to “focus on what they can control in situations and where they can effect change. Push yourself to stop getting stuck at those points that are neither in your control and that cannot be changed.” So, you can manage stress by not fixating on certain uncontrollable situations.
3. Maintain a work-life balance to handle stress
Dr Chhibber says you should ensure you work towards balancing life with both – what your responsibilities are as well as the things that give you joy and pleasure as that will help you to manage your stress. “Look within to determine the small things that can make you happy and allow you to unwind and relax. Invest in these consistently,” she says.
4. Invest in good relationships
Being surrounded by people you feel emotionally secure with, can lead you to be in utmost peace and manage your stress. “Build a robust support system around you. Invest in the relationships that are important to you. Take time out for them and choose to share your experiences with them,” says Dr Chhibber. She further suggests to “discuss the situations you find yourself in and talk of the thoughts and emotions that may be difficult for you. Speaking can give perspective and support can be beneficial in managing the stress as well.”