Chronic stress is a rising problem for busy women as we chase careers, battle the wage gap, balance friendships and raise families. It makes sense that we’re all experiencing feeling tense, overloaded, wound up, anxious, and well, just plain stressed out. It’s the behavioral, physiological, emotional, and psychological response that we have to extreme pressures, demands, and events.
Stress triggers the release of cortisol and that hormone sends you into a flurry of fight or flight responses. While that may have been helpful when we were running from wild animals as we hunted for food it isn’t quite as necessary now. Yet, our bodies still react to what is perceived as danger in the same way it always has.
This is fine when it’s an occasional response, but when it’s chronic and it’s the typical response in every situation on a daily basis there will be problems. Especially because we are rarely faced with an event that requires us to literally fight...
For a year I’ve known I was going to Mexico for the 2nd Annual My Taught You Retreat. For a year I’ve known I was going to buy new clothes for the trip. For a year I knew a lot of things about this trip. Using what I knew I did a few things:
I started shopping 5 weeks before the trip.
I got alterations 3 weeks before the trip.
I got all of my accessories and specialty items 1 week before the trip.
I declined as many obligations as I could in the week leading up to the trip.
I did a packing test a week before.
Why so early? I was intentional about leaving room for error.
I no longer play beat the clock. That’s the game we play where we estimate out exactly how much time everything will take and fill up our calendars to the max.
It looks like this:
Drop off the dry cleaning:15 mins
Drive to Cassandra’s House: 7 mins
Drive to Lou Lou: 12 minutes
Shop at Lou Lou: 17 minutes
Drive to Sprint Store: 13 minutes
Pick up phone: 5 minutes
Drive home: 11 minutes
If there is one...
If I have learned nothing else from diving deep into personal development, it’s that self-assessment is key. What’s often missing from some of these online quizzes we take are the actionable steps of how to use the information. They tell us we are an NKTOB. That’s great but how does that help you on this journey called life? They give you a paragraph at most.
About a year ago I was introduced to Gretchen Rubin’s Four Tendencies. I took the quiz as a part of team-building exercise and I felt incredibly seen. She describes how we respond to expectations through four tendencies:
Copyright Gretchen Rubin[/caption]
The best part about it is that she has two books that dive deeper into it so you can learn about your tendencies and those of others.
I’m a Rebel! Rebel's are rare. I tend to be the only Rebel in the room. I think it’s essential for you all to know this about me. Rebels are...
With the current COVID-19 outbreak raging on, many have been placed under quarantine and are forced to stay inside their homes. Social distancing and the lack of social activities have caused many to feel anxious and overwhelmed.
To help you manage your stress levels in these uncertain times, we’ve collected over a dozen Twitter accounts known for their practical advice, tips, and resources on practicing self-care.
Stay on top of the latest news and updates from social workers all over the world with the IFSW’s official Twitter page. Their organization is the official body of social workers around the globe who strive for sustainable social development and the promotion of responsible practices in their field. Their account also has a ton of advice and helpful recommendations on how to practice social distancing while still managing to help your local community.
On this Twitter...
For the past couple of days, I've been following the coverage of the 50th Anniversary of Bloody Sunday in Selma, Alabama. No matter what I’m doing these days, I see everything through a self-care lens. If you know the story of the historic civil rights actions that took place in Selma, Alabama 50 years ago, you know that the protesters in Selma sacrificed their psychological and physical well-being all in name of equality. They endured, together. But that endurance isn’t magical. They took care of each other.
While watching the movie Selma, when they get to Selma they arrive at a house full of laughter, good times, and most importantly good food. Then later on that night Martin Luther King Jr. can’t sleep and he picks up the phone to have Mahalia Jackson sing, “Precious Lord.”
Precious Lord, take my hand
Lead me on, let me stand
I'm tired, I'm weak, I'm lone
Through the storm, through the night
Lead me on to the light
Take my hand precious Lord, lead...
You've downloaded your free self-care plan now what? Is this your first self-care plan?
If it is, you might be wondering why you need one and what it can do for you. While creating your plan, you have the chance to sit down and think about how to reduce your stress level, outsmart overwhelm, and bring more joy and meaning to your life. Here are a few things that should clarify the purpose of a self-care plan.
It addresses the unique characteristics of your life.
Has anyone ever given you advice and you thought, “this person doesn’t know me at all!” And that’s right they don’t. You are the only one who knows your true stress level, what resources you have, and the unique aspects of your situation. When creating a self-care plan of your own, you can be reassured that it reflects your life.
It is a preventive measure.
I do not believe in stress-free living. Things happen. However, if there is one thing that I’ve learned on my journey, it’s that...
I always thought of myself as a positive person. Well, I am a positive person on the outside but I never realized that in my head I carried a lot of fear, worry, and doubt. In my head, I had an image of what people who lived in fear were like and that wasn't me. I had taken many opportunities in my life that would seem crazy to other people so I certainly didn't live fear I thought. I laugh all the time so no way did I live in fear. My life was moving forward so I couldn't be paralyzed by fear?
Now I was a worrier for sure. It mostly resulted from three things:
1. Being disorganized. My email inboxes were unmanageable and I couldn't manage to get anywhere on time. I could never find my keys in the morning which made it hard to get out the door. I always had four metro cards in rotation because I often misplaced them. My to-do list...what to-do list? Most days they weren't that useful for me. I tried electronic versions, notebooks, and post-it notes but none of those systems really...
This blog is about to show you what every cliche in the book looks like. 2013 was the hardest (maybe second hardest) year of my life. Emotionally, physically and spiritually I was at my worst. At some point, I will share the entire story. But I came out of it stronger and on the road to have an even better life than I had before. Along the way, I picked up some tools and I am using them to continue to better myself. I even made a Pinterest board to document them. Naturally, I am a storyteller and I want to share my transformation journey with others. So as I add tools and refine my toolbox I am committing to sharing that journey with you. Take a peek at what's in store.