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Dave Balch: Stress Relief is a Process

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We live in a fast-paced, gotta-have-it-now world which is, in itself, stressful. The entire fast-food industry is a multi-billion dollar (and calorie) business based entirely on the fact that we can’t wait for much of anything, and are even willing to give up nutrition for the sake of speed and convenience.

Unfortunately there are some out there who take advantage of this impatience, such as those who promise quick riches or miracle cures.

I hate to tell you this, but if you are under a lot of stress there just isn’t any fast way around it. Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to take a pill and have it all go away immediately? There ARE pills out there such as Prozak that make some of it go away, but not all of it!

I spend a lot of time talking about ideas and techniques for reducing stress but none of them are intended to give you that “quick fix” that I’m sure you’d love to have. That’s because, as I just mentioned, there IS no such thing regardless of what you may have heard.

Reducing your stress is a process, not an event. That means that you have to continually work at it, acquire new skills and practice them until they are habits, and eventually your stress levels will come down.

Why is this important to understand? Because I don’t want you to get discouraged if things aren’t getting any better. You have to keep plugging away trying different things, until you find what works best for you. Then you have to practice, practice, practice.

No one said it was going to be easy. On the other hand, living with stress isn’t easy either!

This article is one in a series on coping strategies for patients and caregivers alike. For more thoughts on caregiving, coping strategies, and just plain fun subscribe to my free monthly newsletter at www.CaringAndCoping.com Need a speaker for an upcoming event? I have a program that will knock your socks off! www.ThePPP.org/speaking/#handle

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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.