Dealing with stress as we age
We live in an era when everybody seems to be stressed. 2020 certainly hasn’t done us any favors in this regard; and stress isn’t something that only younger people deal with. As we age our ability to cope with stress can become compromised due to health concerns, slower thinking and diminished resilience.
The seniors must deal with stressors such as changing health issues loss of spouse loss of children and other loss of relationships isolation and securities about their care and basic management of community life involvement financial and securities concern for loved ones going through difficult times. These stressors are often antagonized or worsened because seniors sometimes have more time to sit and think about these issues as opposed to those who are younger who might be very busy and don’t have the time to sit and worry. Here are some strategies that both young and old can employ to help manage stress successfully:
Eat Right – Fresh fruits and veggies and green tea contain antioxidants and polyphenols which help lower stress levels. Eliminating sugar and processed food will also help reduce the stress hormone, cortisol, from your body
Deep breathing – it might sound nutty, but there is a lot of science supporting the benefits of simply taking time to breathe deeply. Breathe in slowly, mentally counting 1-2-3-4, then, slowly exhale, silently counting 4-3-2-1.
Exercise and sleep right – Exercise, particularly with weight resistance, can increase our production of testosterone and growth hormone which help fight cortisol production in the body. It also helps us to sleep right and sleep is essential in flushing out toxins from our bodies.
Cognitive therapy – this is a technique generally assisted by a social worker or therapist which helps to identify negative thought patterns and teaches you new, positive thoughts to replace them.
What are some other ways you have found effective in reducing stress? Share them with us below.