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Thread: Chronic Stress, how to cope?

  1. #1
    Platinum Member Jetta's Avatar
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    Chronic Stress, how to cope?

    I got this heart rate monitor and it says I'm stressed, chronically stressed. Which if other factors are present puts me at risk for a heart attack. It says to change my lifestyle to reduce stress.

    My dad got that speech from a heart surgeon, I laughed because stress is part of life. But obviously my family can't cope well with stress. I feel calm but my heart rate monitor is right I'm stressed.

    So how do I reduce it? My first reading was 100% stressed and I am looking into buying a car which does stress me out. I have my brother looking for cars. Stress level in 70's now. But I think I'm running too much so I'm cutting out some group therapy. Switching individual therapists. Discussed change with case manager so not haphazard as it sounds. But it's a stressful change.

    I'm dating sort of. That's stressful. Daughter stuff, stressful. Life is just stressful. How do you cope with stress? I can't cut out everything.

  2. #2
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    You already have financial and personal concerns (new apartment, daughter visitation, medical issues).
    Why are you trying to add yet another bill and dating too?

    You come across as impatient, like you want things immediately. Learn that sometimes it's better to plan ahead and wait for some things.

  3. #3
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    Start by throwing the stupid stress monitor in the bin.
    You know itís not a medically approved tool and I think you actually should go see a medical Dr about anxiety.

    Of course stress is a normal part of life, but there is no test to quantitate stress.
    And whatís actually important is how you respond to stress.

    You need to stop trying to self diagnose!

  4. #4
    Platinum Member maew's Avatar
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    But I think I'm running too much so I'm cutting out some group therapy. Switching individual therapists. Discussed change with case manager so not haphazard as it sounds. But it's a stressful change.

    I'm dating sort of. That's stressful. Daughter stuff, stressful. Life is just stressful. How do you cope with stress? I can't cut out everything.
    Soooo.... to manage stress you cut out the things that are actually going to manage stress and add in the ones that will mask it? I can't understand why people make these decisions... it's like those that choose not to exercise or eat right because fitting it in to their life stresses them out.

    Stress can't be avoided... we can minimize stress in our lives by taking care of ourselves first and foremost, physically, spiritually and mentally. Exercise, sleep, proper food, time with friends, not adding more to our plate when it's already full or taking things off the plate if something must be added. And avoid using Google as your Dr.... if you are really worried about your heart get a check up and advice from an actual Dr.

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  6. #5
    Platinum Member Rose Mosse's Avatar
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    I've dealt with chronic stress most of my life (probably a bit through the roof) but I really don't know what to say to you on a topic that is full of a lot of nuance, personal decisions and just about plain old balance.

    Try having a more down to earth approach. You seem a little lost between machines, doctors and case managers and I don't doubt everyone has an idea about what's wrong with you. Try to get back in touch with yourself and if you feel like you're on the brink of a melt down, resist the urge to turn to others for answers. Or if you have to, you may find it advantageous to seek a second opinion, one less fettered by...well, stressful approaches. You may have the answers inside you, in your own mind. I hope you find peace.

  7. #6
    Platinum Member sophie274's Avatar
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    What made you decide to get a heart rate monitor?

    I wouldnít buy into or worry about whatever measure of stress the monitor is giving you (Iím assuming measuring heart rate variability?). Thereís not a ton of evidence behind that and it doesnít sound productive or helpful for you to be hearing something such as ďyouíre 100% stressedĒ, whatever that means.

    If youíre worried about heart disease, why not focus on health habits that are known to reduce risk?
    - Stopping smoking if you do smoke
    - regular exercise
    - eating a healthy diet thatís heavy on plants
    - maintaining a healthy weight or working towards a healthy weight
    - getting quality and plentiful sleep
    - getting regular healthcare so that any chronic conditions you might have are being treated (especially high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, etc ...)

    If you find that life is stressful, I think you can both work to reduce stress (cut out stressful unnecessary activities, reduce time spent with people who stress you out, work to reduce sources of financial stress, etc ...) and develop healthy coping mechanisms to deal with those stressed you canít eliminate. Group or individual therapy can be very helpful, meditation, journaling, yoga, spiritual activities, and any other hobbies you find relaxing or distracting. There is also a form of therapy called biofeedback therapy where you would work on your breathing and heart rate variability (likely whatís being measured by the monitor). Some athletes use this technique and I know others who have found it helpful.

  8. #7
    Platinum Member SherrySher's Avatar
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    Heart rate monitors can't ideally measure stress levels.

    They can check heart rates but they change throughout the day and have so many factors.

    Even eating can cause your heart rate to go up as your body's digesting.
    That's not stress.

    If you went for a quick walk, it would probably come up as stress, etc.

    So don't put too much stock into this heart monitor.

    Agree with Sophie on what you can do to keep heart disease at bay, as well as regular check ups with your doctor and mention your concerns.

  9. #8
    Platinum Member catfeeder's Avatar
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    Skip the dating, use the time to attend your group therapy, and see a doctor.

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    It sounds like you have a lot going on. Iím sorry you are under so much stress. Walking really helps me with my stress level as does other exercise. A funny movie or time with a friend helps me sometimes too. But the one thing that personally helps me the most is time spent alone with God, reading my Bible, prayer, and worship music. Nothing else has ever given me such freedom.

  11. #10
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    I'm dating sort of. That's stressful. Daughter stuff, stressful. Life is just stressful. How do you cope with stress? I can't cut out everything.

    For the Love of God's Green Earth stop!!! Remember how you have bad judgement in men and being with Mom was sort of keeping you under control from dating -- and asked if you could handle living on your own and not dating? you already are falling into bad habits. If you continue down the trail, you will end up with mom again and she won't take you back again unless she is stupid. Rinse and repeat. Swear off men. Get to one year of not dating - no male friendships, zip = then go to year two, etc.

    Keep focus on your mental health and your daughter and working - that's it!

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