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Are you stressed? Learn how to handle it.
Everyone experiences stress in their daily lives, and stress increases your blood sugars. So the question is, how can you control it? Because most likely, avoiding it is not something you can really do. You can not control things that happen to you and cause stress but you can control how you react to it and how much that makes you feel.
Stress can be dangerous for you, especially if you have diabetes. The body's normal response to stress is to release hormones that raise blood sugar levels to provide a quick source of energy for coping with stress. These increases in blood sugar levels may upset the balance you are trying to achieve with the management of your diet, exercise and medication. To restore the balance, stress must be reduced or your diet, exercise and medication must be adjusted to compensate for the increase in sugar levels.
Here are a couple of techniques that will help you when you are stressed:
1 - Acquire Emotional Discipline
You have the power to choose how you feel.
Of course there are things that upset you. Of course sometimes we have feelings so strong that it overtakes us. Well... DO NOT LET IT HAPPEN. Feelings don't just shape our moods, they influence our very thoughts and the decisions we make. Every time you get really upset with something and that feeling of anger and dissatisfaction appears to take you over, ask yourself: Is there a solution for this problem? May be one I have not thought of? Can I control what is happening?
As you are thinking, you are trying to analyze the issue that is causing you stress, placing your emotions out of that place where it really bothers you. Slowly, you will start calming down and you will think more objectively about the issue you are facing.
2 - Establish Priorities
We have this habit of having to do too many things all the time. We place this pressure in ourselves so we actually add to our own daily stress. Prioritize what is important to you. If you just can not handle the amount of things you have to do, see which ones really need to be done today. Try to plan ahead if you can and if you can not, rate the priority and importance of not only the tasks you have to do but the feelings you have. Do you really need to feel bad about it?
3 - Act Positively
Now that you prioritize what is important to you and what needs to be done, not only think on the positive side, act on it. Having a positive attitude will help you assert yourself and feel more in control. You waste energy if you always criticize yourself or set unrealistic goals. You will be surprised how much you can accomplish when you say "I can..."
4 - Take Time Out for Yourself
We have our schedules so packed that we forget that as individuals we have our own needs. You need to take some time for you and you only. Try doing something you like for a change. Like they say, "Smell the roses," even if it is not Spring time.
5 - Do Not Give Up
If you feel you tried everything you could, and still you are out of control, seek help. There are a number of support groups and health care professionals that can help you.
Remember there is always a way to solve a problem, even realizing that it has not a solution in a way is a solution.
Attention to your health is vital in learning how to handle stress. But equally important is your motivation and your commitment to building a good emotional attitude and a positive mental outlook in life.
Adapted by Editorial Staff, November, 2005
Last update, July 2008