Coping With Stress



Recognizing & Coping With Stress

Five Approaches To Increase Resiliency & Reduce Harm from Traumatic Stress

Emotional - Self-Regulation                                               

  • Practice the Relaxation Response In Context Of Perceived Threat

Spiritual  Intentionality / Integrity  Re-Connecting w/ Purpose/Meaning

  • Remember Your Calling & What Sustains Your Work

  • Cultivate Compassion Toward Self & Others

Mental – Mindful Self-Compassion

  • Learn to Relinquish Control & Let Go of Perfection

  • Adhere To Process > De-tach From Outcome 

  • God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change. . . by Reinhold Niebuhr

Social –Support Networks [In & Out of Work]   

  • Supportive Relationships- “Safe Harbor

  • To BE At Ease to Tell Your Story without fear of Blow Back                                        

Physical –Revitalizing Self-Care Activities

  • Prioritize Physical Activity – Aerobic exercise at least 3 X week, daily if possible

  • Intentionally Nurturing Self & Others: Calming & Soothing behaviors

  • Attending To Nature Creatively Engaging All Senses: Gardening, Cooking, PLAY         

  • Welcoming Wonder & Curiosity: Music, Dance, Drama, Art, Literature     

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# Adapted from: * Compassion Fatigue Resiliency – A New Attitude, by J. Eric Gentry & Anna B. Baranowsky (2013)

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Dr. Bruce McEwen of the Neuroendocrinology Laboratory at the Rockefeller University in New York writes*

The brain is the key organ of the response to stress because it determines what is threatening and, therefore, potentially stressful, as well as the physiological and behavioral responses, which can be either adaptive or damaging. Stress involves two-way communication between the brain and the cardiovascular, immune, and other systems via neural and endocrine mechanisms. Beyond the "flight-or-fight" response to acute stress, there are events in daily life that produce a type of chronic stress and lead over time to wear and tear on the body…

Dr.McEwen explains that, in the presence of chronic stress, the part of our brain responsible for assessing threats, becomes overloaded and begins to malfunction, reinforcing a spiral of “always on” stress responses.  After reviewing the available evidence, he concludes that two of the very best ways to recover from stress overload is through regular moderate physical exercise, such as walking, and spending time with people who care about you. Especially when combined, for example walking and talking with a friend, these two practices can have a dramatic healing effect on both the brain and body.

* The Physiology And Neurobiology Of Stress And Adaptation: Central Role Of The Brain. Physiol Rev. 2007 Jul;87(3):873-904]  


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