Your Personal Rx for Stress
Stress can get the best of anyone. The key is to discover the coping strategy that works best for you. Here are tips on dealing with your stress, Mama, no matter what type you are.
Do deep diaphragmatic breathing: Though ideal for Monitors, oxygenated belly breaths can also be a stress saver for Distracters, the Spiritually Inclined, and Fidgeters. “When you’re taking long, deep breaths, you interrupt the physiological response of anxiety, which is to breathe shallowly,” says Dr. Douglas A. Jones, a clinical psychologist in private practice in Sewickley, Pennsylvania.
Seek support: When you’re lying in bed or trying to relax—say in the waiting room at the infertility specialist’s office—”your shoulders can still be hunched, your fists clenched,” says Seskevich. This can sabotage your relaxation efforts. To relax those muscles, let the bed or chair support your weight by tell yourself to “feel the bed” (or the chair) beneath you, says Seskevich. You’ll be surprised by how good this paradigm shift feels.
Get fit: Even if you’re not a Fidgeter, there’s no better way to burn off steam (not to mention calories!) than a workout. In fact, exercise can also physiologically prepare you for a more passive relaxation technique, such as creative visualization or meditating while using a calming mantra. “Plus, it releases those nice calming endorphins,” says Dr. Whorter.
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