In the transition from summer to fall, it’s common to experience greater stress. With the kids back to school, the weather getting colder and the holidays approaching, it’s no wonder. There is hope, however, especially when this stress translates into more severe anxiety, depression, insomnia and stress-related physical symptoms. Following these recommendations from Dr. David Janeway, Westmed psychiatrist, will improve your mental health and often prevent any worsening of your symptoms:
- Focus on the basics: good nutrition, sleep and exercise.
- Engage in a daily stress management routine like yoga, meditation, tai chi.
- Allow time to spend winding down with friends and family.
- Start therapy if your problems are more deep-seated or chronic issues that remain unresolved.
- Consider consulting a psychiatrist if your symptoms are interfering with your daily functioning.
- Avoid overuse of alcohol or the use of recreational drugs as these can often make matters worse, and if used excessively, can lead to addiction.
Try this simple breathing meditation that can lower your stress level and even lower your blood pressure and heart rate:
–Allow yourself 15 minutes with no interruptions. Turn your cell phone off.
–Breathe in slowly on the count of 4.
–Hold the breath for a count of 5-7.
–Breathe out slowly up to a count of 7-8.
–Let all thoughts go and just focus on the above, and you should feel more calm and even rejuvenated afterwards.