Feeling stuck: How to stop stressing about your stress


Written by Hadar Naftalovich

At some points in life, everyone is bound to experience some form of stress. In a city like NY, it would be surprising if we did not experience feeling stressed at least once a day! This stress can take a toll on us, especially those chronic everyday stressors.

What are we to make of this? Are we supposed to try to eliminate stress entirely from our lives — Move to Hawaii, chill in a hammock by the beach and let the world pass us by? Though it might sound tempting, it’s not a very practical solution —and besides, there are stressors in Hawaii, too. Now that we’ve ruled out getting rid of stress entirely, let’s move to plan B: learn how to deal with it.

To start, here are some of the basics about stress. In the short term, stress takes the shape of the “fight or flight” response that is often described when dealing with anxiety. Cortisol and adrenaline are released into the blood stream, causing our heart rates to increase. Our blood rushes to the major muscle groups, giving us the energy and focus we need to get tasks done, and our breathing might become more frequent and shallow in order to get more oxygen. In the long term, these effects can cause other symptoms, like headaches or insomnia. In the moment, in some sense, stress feels energizing because we feel that we are ready to take on the world! Overtime though, if we have too much stress, we see changes in our bodies that have the opposite effect: these changes are draining and detrimental to our work and productivity.

So, if you’re feeling stuck, here are some tips to better handle your stress:

  • Engage in a behavior that is incompatible with the symptoms of stress for 5-min/day. A good example of this is deep breathing. Taking longer and deeper breaths can trick our bodies into thinking we are no longer in a stressful situation and allow us to focus on our tasks in a more efficient manner.
  • Restructure your to-do list. Go through your to-do list again and take five items off the list. We may be feeling stressed because the big list needs to be done, so ask yourself: Does it all need to be done now? Restructure the list based on what needs to get done today, and what can wait. Another option is to restructure your to-do list into weekly goals and daily goals, thereby creating a manageable timeline for your tasks and helping you feel more in control.
  • Give yourself a reward. Aside from helping us get our tasks done, this step can also help motivate us to do tasks that we would otherwise not partake in. If we combine one daunting task with one fun task (like exercising and watching TV, for example) we’ve created a situation where we can not only reduce stress by crossing items off our to-do lists, but also by merit of our enjoyment itself.

In sum, stress can have negative, long lasting effects, but by  taking a deep breath, planning your day more efficiently, and rewarding yourself and you’ll be on your way to getting unstuck in no time!

 

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The Way of Mastery is to break all the rules—but you have to know them perfectly before you can do this; otherwise you are not in a position to transcend them.

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In a recent survey of our patients, 94% would recommend our practice to a friend.
Calmer in the Face of Hardship
I came to the Center for Anxiety for help in dealing with a family member who suffered from extreme anxiety. But I ended up getting a serious illness two months later and started having my own sessions. With the help of my therapist I got through my illness, learned to understand my habits that were making my major life stresses worse, learned to communicate better, taper my anger, and surprisingly I became more calmer even though my hardships in life worsened. Therapy is a lot of work and not easy, but nothing in life comes easy! I became a better and softer mom and (when I practice what I learned) and my kids and home are calmer and happier. I am still a work in progress and have more to work on, but I know I am on the right path. I wish I knew before how my communication style and anger were really impacting my life, how being softer you can accomplish way more then being harsh. I have been to other therapists in the past and I can hands down say that the Center for Anxiety’s approach is really effective. I have even referred a bunch of people to the Center and they have been really happy with the therapists and how much they really care for their patients.
I Tackled a Long List of Fears
When I first came to the Center for Anxiety, my list of anxieties/fears was long! I was scared of getting sick, getting stranded, driving, flying and more. With the help of my therapist, I immediately got to work and tackled every one of my fears. Now the world is open to me and I feel free! I can dream big and accomplish whatever I set my mind to! I am especially grateful that I was able to do all this without having to rely on medication. It was hard work – grueling at times! – but now I have the coping tools within me for life. In fact a family member recently said to me “You are awesome. You can accomplish anything you set your mind to because you don’t let fear stop you! ” Thank you Dr. Rosmarin and the Center for Anxiety staff for helping me get here. My fears no longer limit me and I love my life. Try it, it might turn your life around too!
Highly Skilled and Professional Treatment
When I sought treatment at the Center for Anxiety, the clinic was is in its incipient stages. However, by the time I successfully finished treatment, the Center for Anxiety grew and flourished into a world-class treatment center, offering cutting-edge, evidence-based treatment to countless individuals. The continued success of the Center for Anxiety comes as no surprise to me, with a team that contains such highly skilled professionals who display clinical acumen, empathy, and compassion. When I first entered treatment I was concerned that therapy would be similar to the experiences with past psychologists: a seemingly bottomless pit with no reductions in my anxiety symptoms, but was so relieved when I started to feel less anxious after only a handful of sessions. My therapist created a treatment plan that was tailored exactly to my needs and taught me practical skills to help me work through my anxiety that I still use and practice to this very day.
No More Panic
When I first came in, I was struggling with panic disorder and didn’t even know it, which only made dealing with it that much more difficult. After my first time sitting down with my therapist, however, I instantly started to gain perspective and look at the difficult situation in a different light. Our meetings helped me conquer the issue step by step and get my life back on track. I’d strongly recommend that anyone dealing with anxiety in a way that impacts their day to day life should visit the Center for Anxiety! I know it helped me tremendously.
Free of Obsessions
When I woke up one morning last June and didn’t want to get out of bed, I knew I needed help. The thought of getting through another day with all my anxieties, obsessions and rituals was just too overwhelming. After feeling stuck for years, I just couldn’t anymore. Thankfully, that’s when I found the Center for Anxiety. Dr. Rosmarin and his staff are experts at what they do, kind and professional. After just several weeks I accomplished my initial targets. The change I experienced in such a short amount of time was astounding that I stayed on for a while longer to work on more complex goals. I soon achieved those too. Now, I am free of my obsessions, know how to manage my anxiety, and love my life. My only regret: not having done this sooner. I wish I had known that you don’t have to wait to hit rock bottom to get help.
Depression Lifted
I’m 26 years old and I’ve been suffering from terrible depression for 7 years. In the throws of my sadness I literally wanted to die. Soon after starting therapy at the Center for Anxiety, my depression lifted. My suicidal thoughts began to dissipate. I remember the feeling that came over me as soon as the dark cloud above me left. It was the most liberating feeling I have ever experienced. I actually shouted to my friends, family and anyone nearby me “I’m Happy! I am Happy!” I felt free.
From EXISTING to LIVING
Over the course of four years I developed anxiety-like symptoms (tightness in chest, gut, back) that slowly but surely increased in duration and severity. The EXTREMELY uncomfortable nature of the symptoms notwithstanding, I still continued and managed to function. The effort required to do so, however, left me utterly drained. Having always been a very spiritual person I strongly felt that a course of therapy incorporating a spiritual component could potentially work well for me and decided to give the Center for Anxiety a try. Happily, I have achieved significant symptom reduction, tremendously improved emotional/mental health, and above all, Connection. Medication free. I’m no longer just existing, I’m LIVING. I’ve been given a second chance to become the unique human being that I was meant to be.
No More worries
I have wormed in healthcare for 36 years in many different settings, and I have been overwhelmingly satisfied with the Center for Anxiety. When staff says they are going to call, I get a call. From the first contact, I have been very impressed with the professionalism and efficiency. I had a situation and needed to have sessions more than once per week, and my clinicians worked out a schedule to accommodate my needs. I was astounded that they attended to me so quickly and effectively - they made my priority their priority. My clinicians were also excellent at what they do - they have a plan for me each session, and it's clear that they have thought in advance about each session, and that they are listening to what I say and observing what I do, even though our sessions have been conducted via Telehealth. Compassion is a quality that I have all too often found to be lacking in my experiences as a healthcare professional and patient, and this is not the case with the Center for Anxiety. Of all the websites I found on Google, I am so thankful that God guided my hand to yours.
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