Join us for Sunday Funday at NSRY for a deeply relaxing class with Suzanne Otterbein this and every Sunday at 9:30am-10:45am. Simple, easy and deeply therapeutic poses to calm our nerves and get our bliss on before the Patriots win the next Superbowl!! Drop in or register at www.nsryoga.com!! GO PATS!
You are not alone. And the Holiday Season can be an especially stressful time for many with added financial strain, grief and sadness over those we have loved and lost, and overwhelming, over-commitments.
According to the 2014 annual Stress in America™ survey by the American Psychological Association (APA) the Top 4 sources of stress are –
Money, Work, Family Responsibilities, and Health Concerns.
The APA study also found –
- 72% of Americans reported feeling stressed about money at least some of the time during the past month.
- 22% said that they experienced extreme stress about money during the past month
- Parents, younger generations and lower-income households (less than $50,000.00 annual income) have higher stress than others overall
- Some people are putting their health care needs on hold because of financial concerns.
- Stress about money impacts relationships
- 22% say they are not doing enough to manage their stress.
- American stress levels have been trending down since the annual survey first began in 2007, but still “higher than healthy levels.”
Here’s Some Good News –
- Americans who have some emotional support report lower stress levels
- Help is Available!
If you are experiencing negative stress in your life, or feel overwhelmed by stress seek help! Talk to your doctor. Ask about professional counseling. Look into resources in the community. Talk to family and friends for emotional support.
Remember – You are not alone! Stress is a normal and unavoidable part of life. Some stress is even considered positive, such as the stress that motivates us to accomplish a task. But too much negative stress can negatively affect your emotional and physical health and wellbeing. Especially when it occurs on a daily basis.
Stress Response – The response to stress can be physical and emotional tension, pain, lowered immune response, and inflammation. Chronic stress can lead to chronic disease including high blood pressure, endocrine, metabolic, autoimmune, and mental health disorders.
RELAX and DE-STRESS – The opposite of the stress response is the relaxation response. Methods to relax and de-stress include: acupuncture, art therapy, deep breathing, exercise, hypnosis, laughter/humor, massage, mindfulness, meditation, music and dance, reading, reiki, tai chi, and yoga. Consider incorporating complementary and integrative therapies into your ‘wellness care plan.’ Learn techniques that you can incorporate daily for ‘best results.’
REMEMBER to BREATHE. When stressed, people often breathe more shallow or even hold their breath. Breathing relaxation techniques are simple to learn, fast and effective to use, and available 24/7.
WALK or DRIVE by the OCEAN. Views of the water can change your psychology and physiology. Just ask Joey who is lucky to enjoy the View from the Dock every day! Take a drive along BackShore Gloucester or walk Good Harbor or Singing Beach and you will a relief of tension and experience your blood pressure lowering.
Lucky to Live on Cape Ann!
‘Fukuju’ in Japanese means ‘Long Life and Happiness.’
The Longest Living Woman in the World Just Celebrated Her 117th Birthday! http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation-now/2015/03/04/worlds-oldest-person-117-birthday-japan/24362311/
Misao Ōkawa (大川 ミサヲ) Born March 5th, 1898 is the oldest living woman. She currently resides in a nursing home in Osaka, Japan. (See link above for more of her story.)
When asked her advice on ‘longevity,’ Misao-san answered
- “Eat and Sleep Well.” Misao-san reports sleeping 8 hours a day, and eating sushi. mackerel (‘Saba’) being her favorite. (Hey Joey, More ‘Good News’ for Gloucester Fisherman!)
Benefits Sushi is high in natural Omega-3 fatty acids which has been reported to help decrease inflammation. Information on Omega-3 and health benefits from Mayo Clinic – http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/heart-disease/in-depth/omega-3/art-20045614 Over the past few years we have seen an increase in Sushi offerings on Cape Ann: Latitude 43, The Rudder, Madfish, the Franklin, Midori, and the Studio are some of the Cape Ann Restaurants offering Sushi.
Risks Sushi also has some risks involved if the fish is not properly stored and prepared. Raw (and even cooked) seafood is not meant for daily consumption due to levels of mercury. For more information on mercury in fish and shellfish – http://water.epa.gov/…/fishshellf…/outreach/advice_index.cfm Note: Woman who are pregnant or nursing, young children, and people on chemotherapy or otherwise immunosuppressed are advised to avoid raw/uncooked fish and meat. Check with your doctor for advice.
For more on healthy vs. unhealthy sushi – http://www.askmen.com/sports/foodcourt_250/259_healthiest-and-unhealthiest-sushi.html Note: FDA recommends women who are pregnant only eat fish and other seafood that has been cooked thoroughly. Also, it is recommended to avoid raw seafood or meat if you are on chemotherapy or otherwise immunosuppressed. For information on what is safe to eat when on chemotherapy – .http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/patientinstructions/000061.htm
Many studies on inflammation and fish use fish oil supplements to increase intake of omega-3. **Check with your doctor first if you are considering fish-oil supplements, especially if you are taking blood thinners! When in doubt, check it out and ask your doctor’s advice!
- “Learn how to Relax” was Misao-san’s other advice. Though the article does not mention specific relaxation techniques, meditation is practiced daily in the Japanese culture in many forms. One common form is through ‘Sei Shin Toitsu’ – ‘mind-concentration.’ (More on Meditation, Reiki, Sei Shin Toitsu and other relaxation techniques in upcoming posts.)
I wonder if Misao Ōkawa knows about ‘Reiki Ryoho?’ The Japanese Healing Method/Art for mind-body improvement. Founded by Mikao Usui Sensei (August 15, 1865-March 9, 1926.) Daily practice of ‘Reiki Ryoho’ in the form of self-Reiki is said to invite ‘Health and Happiness.’
Reflecting twice daily on the Reiki ‘Gokai’ or Precepts, also known as ‘Reiki (Kyogi) Principles,’ as part of Reiki practice helps create feelings of ‘inner peace and calm.’ A wonderful way to begin the day with ‘positive affirmations!’ ‘Work diligently’ refers to ‘working on self for self-improvement’ and greater levels of health. Inner peace has a way of ‘rippling out’ to others. May you enjoy peace and calm today!
Join me for a cup of tea! TODAY there is a Fund Raiser for the Continued Reconstruction Efforts in Japan held at Showa Institute in Boston. If you are unable to attend but would like to contribute, contact Kyoko Wada – http://spouses.mit.edu/mit-events/event/15955591
To Learn Simple Relaxation Techniques for Stress Reduction and Increased Calm Contact me – www.dreamtimewellness.com or https://www.facebook.com/pages/Dreamtime-Wellness-/348619611849199
Next Reiki Training Shoden (1st Degree/Beginning Level): Sunday. March 22nd in Manchester-by-the-Sea, MA. Reiki Ryoho Shoden Level focuses on ‘Self-Reiki.’ Only 12 More Days Until Spring!! Celebrate Spring by spending the day in peaceful relaxation and harmony as you learn simple techniques for Relaxation and Self-Care.
~ May You Enjoy a Long and Happy Life! – Karen Pischke B.S.N., R.N.
Disclaimer: This blog provides general information and discussion about health and related subjects. The words and other content provided in this blog, and in any linked materials, are not intended and should not be construed as medical advice. If the reader or any other person has a medical concern, he or she should consult with an appropriately licensed physician or other health care worker. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this blog or in any linked materials. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or 911 immediately. The views expressed on this blog and website have no relation to those of any academic, hospital, practice or other institution with which the authors are affiliated.