Did you know April is Stress Awareness Month? Living with ALS or having a loved one with the disease comes with its own unique stressors and anxieties. Stress comes from wanting things to be different – it’s really that simple. Every single day each of us is faced with a number of stressors we choose how we respond to those stress triggers is what makes the difference. Ask yourself.. why is this happening for me, not to me?
Director of Community Programs, Tonya Hitschmann, hosts a virtual ‘Stress Less On Purpose’ workshop every other month. These workshops aim to guide our community through self-care and direction in the midst of ALL of life’s curveballs, helping you live life more PurposeFULLy.
Today and every day focus on your why and your purpose. Think about the following four things. Focused Attention, Body Scan, My Why and Support.
- Pause and challenge your thoughts. Choose how you’ll respond.
- Meditation: Choose any object; a small candle for example. Start with one minute and stay focused.
- Left nostril breathing to calm. Long, slow, deep breaths.
- Check your heartbeat. Rapid-100+?
- When I can no longer change the situation I am in, I am challenged to change the way I view it.
- Knowing your WHY gives you a filter to make choices…that will help you achieve greater fulfillment.
- ALS Connection Groups
Find simple ways to have less stress in your daily routine. Close your eyes. Breathe in and out ten times-concentrate. Imagine when you breathe in that it reaches all the way to your pelvis and lifts your abdomen. When breathing out, let the air come all the way from the lower abdomen and pelvis. Deep breathing relaxes the body and focusing on your breathing relaxes your mind.
Thank yourself for what you do. During the day, make small notes of all of the things you have finished. Collect the notes in a jar or on a table. When you go to bed, take a look at what you’ve written down and thank yourself for all of the big and small things you have done. Gratefulness induces positive feelings, which in turn adds motivation to activity.
Stress can cause pressure to the scalp and head area. By relaxing these “think areas”, you will begin to ease your reaction to stress. Rub your entire scalp with your fingers. Close your eyes and let the relaxed and good feelings slide through your whole body. This exercise is better with a friend, because of the oxytocin hormone related to another person’s touch.
Missed our latest Stress Less on Purpose? Watch the recording below and keep an eye our on our virtual events page to register for our next workshop.