I think it must be true what they (whoever they are) say about stress weakening your defenses. I have been sick so many times this year, it’s a little ridiculous. I woke up last week with two pink eyes (I get pink eye more than any adult I know) and a terribly painful sinus infection. Luckily for me, this past week has been spring break and I’ve had a chance to recover.

I tried to run with my dog before I was completely better. I wasn’t feeling terrible (just not quite right), and the weather was so lovely that I just felt the need to go outside. Plus, it’s always exciting to put on a running outfit and lace my shoes up; it’s like the start of a great adventure. I made it about 1/2 a mile before my dog needed a potty break. When I stopped, though, I felt dizzy. Really dizzy! And then I felt like I might vomit. The next day I decided to try again, with far greater success. Granted, I was going pretty slowly, but at least it didn’t end up with me puking in the bushes.

I’ve decided that I need to do something to lower my stress levels. I’ve been learning lately that I don’t handle my stress very well, and it clearly isn’t healthy for me.  I am sick and tired of feeling sick so often. Here is what I’ve decided to do:

  1. Exercise: I always feel better after a workout, or at the very least after a walk outside. Exercise helps to get out some of my anxiety in a healthy way. Plus, it breaks up the day.
  2. Eat better: It’s like a catch 22 – when I’m stressed or upset, I like to eat junk food. Eating junk food makes me feel gross, which makes me more anxious. I’m glad to enjoy a nice piece of dark chocolate, but I always feel so much better when I eat right.
  3. Do something relaxing: I’ve got a gift card to Healthworks – and I am SO getting a massage. Yes!
  4. Stay in touch: talking to friends and family is a good way to vent and process stress.

Do you have any tricks for staying on top of stress levels?

– Hannah