Checklist for Handling Overstress
REDUCE YOUR STRESS LOAD:
-----Reduce the pace of change in your life.
-----Reduce the social obligations.
-----Reduce work or school obligations.
-----Postpone changes in your living situation
-----Say "No" more often.
-----Eliminate possible food or environmental allergens.
-----Reduce environmental toxins.
GET OFF THE "ROLLER COASTER":
-----Diet: Take a multivitamin, mineral, trace element preparation; stabilize your blood sugar; eat more vegetables.
-----Exercise: Twenty minutes to two hours, three times a week.
-----Stop Your Pick-Me-Up's (consult your physician)
-----Stop Your Put-Me-Down's (consult your physician)
DO A "REST FOR YOUR MIND" ACTIVITY:
-----Recreational reading, arts, crafts, music,
-----Religious counseling -- A Christian Message
HELP YOUR BODY CLOCK RE-SET ITSELF:
-----Set regular sleep times
-----Avoid time zone shifts or rapid changes in your work shift
-----Use daylight spectrum fluorescent lights to set your body clock's "awake time".
VISIT A PHYSICIAN
-----Check for hidden illness
VISIT A COUNSELOR
-----Obtain help with self relaxation and general psychological counseling.
IF YOU JUST CAN NOT MAKE ENOUGH HAPPY MESSENGERS:
-----Have your doctor prescribe for you a brain chemical re-balancer
THREE RULES TO PERMANENTLY CONQUER OVERSTRESS
RULE ONE: LEARN TO READ YOUR BODY SIGNS
Learn to check your body frequently for signs of OVERSTRESS. Watch for the telltale disturbances in your sleep pattern, as this is usually the earliest sign of OVERSTRESS.
You must learn to read your body signs in much the same way as the diabetic learns the early warning signs of abnormal blood sugar. In order to cope successfully with diabetes, the diabetic has to learn to read his body's signals. If he has a constant thirst, fatigue and excessive urination, that means the sugar is too high. If he has shakiness, irritability, and perspiration that means the blood sugar is too low. In order to live with diabetes, the diabetic must understand what these signals mean.
Likewise, if you are a person who is prone to OVERSTRESS, you must learn to look for its earliest warning signs. As soon as your sleep patterns change, or you experience fatigue, lack of enjoyment of life, anxiety, multiple aches and pains -- that is the time to go through the OVERSTRESS checklist.
RULE TWO: EXCHANGE YOUR STRESSES
Keep your stress level below your individual OVERSTRESS point by "exchanging stresses". If a new stress comes into your life, then make room for it by eliminating or postponing another stress. This way, your TOTAL stress level remains low.
The natural tendency is for people to let their stresses pile up rather than exchanging them. In this fashion, OVERSTRESS gradually occurs. With the development of OVERSTRESS, the person starts using more and more Pick-Me-Up's, taking off on the wild roller coaster of ill health.
IN ORDER TO STAY HEALTHY LEARN TO EXCHANGE YOUR STRESSES
RULE THREE: USE YOUR TOOL BOX
You now have a "TOOL BOX" full of ways to deal with your OVERSTRESS. Whenever your body shows signs of OVERSTRESS, you can use the tools from this book to help set yourself back on the path of well being.
If you are feeling ill from OVERSTRESS, remember that the troubled sleep, fatigue, aches, lack of enjoyment of life, and panic attacks are caused by chemical changes in your brain. Effective treatment is available now.
HERE COMES ANOTHER PLAGUE
Throughout history, mankind has had periodic episodes of illness which have decimated our population. The Bubonic Plague killed half of the world in the 400's. Syphilis killed one in four Europeans when it was introduced to Europe in the 1500's. Every other Hawaiian was killed by measles in the 1700's. Meanwhile, the Native Americans were slain by smallpox and other imported diseases.
Today, one in ten persons is falling victim to OVERSTRESS. Those who are becoming chemically dependent are walking a fatal path. Others "drop out" at an early age, to join the ranks of society's "marginal survivors".
The cost to society is immense. The effects of OVERSTRESS cost our society at least 60 billion dollars a year. Our society loses through: lost productivity, medical care for the complications of OVERSTRESS, job accidents, and traffic fatalities (half of which are related to driving while usingPick-Me-Up's).
How can it be that one in every ten persons cannot physically adjust to the stress levels found in today's world? The answer lies in our society's pace of CHANGE.
FROM CARRIAGE TO ROCKET SHIP
We certainly live in a society whose hallmark is rapid change. Our broader definition of stress tells us that this rapid change means high stress levels. Most of the human experience on Earth has not involved such a rapid pace of change. Most of the human experience has not prepared us to handle the demands of 20th Century life. That is why one in ten persons is constantly fighting OVERSTRESS.
Let us step outside our present time to see this more clearly. In the state of Utah, near the Great Salt Lake, is an archeological site known as "Danger Cave". Excavation at this site shows a record of human habitation extending back ten thousand years. This record shows that four hundred generations of persons lived basically the same life style and used basically the same tools.
Generation upon generation faced similar life conditions, made subtle changes from season to season, and from year to year.Ways of solving each of life's problems were accumulated in the knowledge of the village elders and religious leaders. This knowledge was then passed from generation to generation.
Change, when it did come, occurred over millennia.
A people who hunted with spears learned to use spearthrowers to increase their accuracy -- time elapsed: perhaps 5,000 years.
Bows and arrows greatly increased the accuracy and ease of hunting -- time elapsed: perhaps 4,000 more years.
Agriculture was developed. In this case, the growing of maize as a crop -- time elapsed: perhaps 2,000 more years.
A future archeological excavation of Salt Lake City would show a gigantic upheaval occurring around 1900 A.D. After ten thousand years of snail paced change, the future arrived precipitously.
During the course of a single lifetime, a person born in 1900 A.D. has seen the advent of radio, television, computers, automobiles, motorcycles, propeller airplanes, jet aircraft, space ships, a moon landing, test tube babies, two wars which involved the entire Earth in conflict, nuclear power generation, and nuclear weapons.
In this environment, the elder generation can no longer be assured of having the "right answer" to every problem. Life is changing radically within the space of even one generation. Today's society has shifted from being elder dominated, where the solutions to life's problems are passed down by the elders, to a "youth culture", where flexibility and adaptability to change are vital if one is to "stay on top of" a continuously changing life.
Survival in society today requires more flexibility and adaptability than every before in human history. All the preceding years of human existence have not prepared us physically for such a grueling pace of change. One in ten persons is already dropping by the wayside, yet the pace accelerates unabated. Twenty First Century humans will have to maintain physiologic balance in an increasingly stressful sea of technological and cultural changes.
Luckily, an understanding of the problem is emerging which is enabling us to help those with Low Stress Tolerance. As society stress levels continue to rise, we will all need to recognize and counter the effects of -- OVERSTRESS.