Category Archives: stress management

Self-care during self-isolation: how to deal with the overwhelm

We’ve been living under different lockdown measures for 8 months as of writing, and this COVID-19 pandemic has drastically changed our lifestyle and our lives as we know it. 

As we all do our best to take care of ourselves and our families in these challenging and uncertain times, self-care is a critical tool we must turn to. Being cooped inside and self-isolated doesn’t mean your physical and mental health should suffer. There is a lot we can do to maintain a strong mind and body despite the chaos we are all facing today.

This excerpt is from Dawns: A Weekly Devotional for Self-Care and Spiritual Growth, co-authored by Isa Garcia, Janina Marie Rivera and Ida Torres, published by OMF Literature, the leading publisher and distributor of Christian books in the Philippines. The book is a helpful guide that we can use to practice daily self-care. 

Through these actionable steps that we can take everyday, we can be able to take better care of ourselves and show up as the best version of ourselves. 

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What To Do When You’re Too Overwhelmed

At one point (or maybe more than a hundred points) in your life, things will become just too much. Too many items on your to-do list. Too much pressure from your boss. Too much anxiety over things you have no control over. Too many people in the room with you. Too much anger over a situation. Too many things on your mind. When faced with too much, here are some things that you can do.

Talk to God. Don’t make this your last option. You don’t have to say a “formal” prayer. Make your prayers as normal as breathing. The more you talk to God, the more natural it will feel to turn to Him when things get too overwhelming.

Breathe in, breathe out. The act of physically taking a deep breath and releasing it after a few seconds can help your brain and your heart slow down. Do this a few times until you feel calm enough to think with a clear head.

Step out/away. If you need to leave a roomful of people, do it. If you need to walk away from a person you’re talking to, do it. When you need to leave that to-do list and walk around for a few minutes, do it. When you’re ready to face whatever needs to be dealt with, go back.

Read, watch, or listen to something. It sometimes helps to do something that is so far from your current, overwhelming task just so you can get your bearings back. Read a few chapters from a non-school or non-work book. Watch a few minutes of your current favorite show. Listen to soothing (or rocking!) music. The idea is to get your mind off things, if only for a while.

Sleep. Yes, sometimes, you just need to fully rest.

This is an excerpt from the book entitled Dawns: A Weekly Devotional for Self-Care and Spiritual Growth, co-authored by Isa Garcia, Janina Marie Rivera, and Ida Torres. It is available at OMF Lit Bookshop and other leading bookstores nationwide and can also be ordered online through OMF Literature.

Managing Stress with a Busy Schedule

What are stressors? Stressors are stimuli that cause stress. These stimuli come in many forms. These can be stressors from relationships at work and at home, worries on finances, career changes, health issues, and even safety. Stressors are normal and they can either cause positive stress or negative stress.  One reality though, we can’t totally remove stress from our lives. They will always be there.  The big difference, however, lies in how we manage them.  No matter how busy we are, there’ll be ways or strategies to keep them from causing havoc into our lives.

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Manila Bay as seen from the back of Ocean Park (Photo by RD, October 2013)

How do I manage stress with my (sometimes) hectic schedule?

I DO REGULAR WORKOUTS. Typical workout week for me is setting five days for training and two days for me time.  Meaning, I set aside two days for myself or family or friends, for spiritual development, or a day for simply doing things that I’d like to do. My regular workouts give me a different high. This happens every time I finish my training, or even after finishing a race. Running, first and foremost, keeps me sane. Swimming, just like running, is my therapy.

I MAINTAIN THIS BLOG. Blogging is worth the time and effort for me.  Been blogging these past seven years, and it is through blogging, where I gain lots of friends, broaden my network, and perhaps, improve as a writer.

I LISTEN TO MUSIC OR PLAY A MUSICAL INSTRUMENT. For me, music is a great therapy for stress. I appreciate music that sets the mood or pace the way I do things at my place.  It can be mellow or upbeat.  Music (and singing to the tune, too) relaxes me as well.

I GO FOR A THERAPEUTIC MASSAGE. I know when I’m so beat, dead tired, or fatigued. Massage helps me manage that. Massage creates wonders, in particular, soothes tired back muscles, and reduces soreness or muscle tension.

I GET A GOOD NIGHT’S SLEEP (AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE). This is such a challenge for me knowing that I do my workouts/training at night.  But again, getting a good shut-eye or an adequate sleep is one of the most important things one can do for the overall health and well-being of the self. Thus, I always try to get a good rest of six to seven hours.  At times, I spend Saturday afternoons as siesta time.

May be it’s the reason why I felt magnetized by the be-stress-free-ask-me statement shirt at the Feel Good Lactium booth during the BLOGAPALOOZA 2014 earlier this month. The statement reflects their stress-free advocacy, which is turning stress into good or positive stress.

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IN A NUTSHELL

We do have a choice.  And the path we choose and have control over with is our attitude on things. Life’s too short to be stressed out all the time. So chill out!

INTERCARE Rocks!

Two months ago, while trying to reach something overhead from my bed, I lose my balance and fell off the bed about two feet high.  Pain shot through my right arm when it took the brunt of the impact as I fell on the floor.  Next day, I could not lift it well. It felt like I just had a recent vaccine shot in the arm.  Though I could feel no pain and even swing it, there was this little discomfort.   This incident happened just days before a marathon race. 
 
A month passed yet I still felt something lodged in the joint.  For my own peace of mind, I had an orthopedic check-up. The staff ordered me for an X-ray of my arm.  According to the doctor the result showed no marked abnormalities except that I had to do some stretches to heal my inflamed tendon.
 
I was so thankful to be part of the Rocktape event which paved way for me to know the other services under INTERCARE such as Chiropractic, Acupuncture, Myotherapy, Rehabilitative Medicine, Stress Management, Graston Technique and Yoga and Pilates.




My right arm with Rocktape

Personally, I was one of the beneficiaries of the nerve cracking experience i.e., Chiropractic therapy and Rocktape technique demonstrated and applied by Dr. Martin Camara, INTERCARE’s Clinic Director, and one of his staffs respectively.  With this experience, it encouraged me to even advise my older sister to try their services with the hope of finding the long overdue search for the right treatment of her illness.  Thank God … the DOCTOR IS IN! 
 

 
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