Tips for managing summer stress

(BPT) – Each summer we look forward to the sunny weather, schools closing and the vacations. However, managing your or your family’s play, travel and work schedules can be stressful.

According to United Health Foundation’s 2016 America’s Health Rankings, the average number of days per month adults unfavorably assess their mental health ranged from 2.4 days in South Dakota to as high as 4.7 days in Arkansas and West Virginia. The national average is 3.7 days.

Poor mental health days can affect every aspect of one’s day, from your drive to work to running errands before your child’s soccer practice. So what can be done about managing stress and preventing tough days ahead?

First, we must understand that stress is here to stay – a modest amount of stress, offset by periods of relative calm and security, is normal. But high levels of stress can be dangerous to your health, leading to headaches, back pain, fatigue, upset stomach, anxiety, depression and heart problems.

Recognizing stress

Stress is a physical and psychological response to a demand, threat or problem. It stimulates and increases your level of awareness, also known as the “fight or flight” response. The response occurs whether the stress is positive or negative. Positive stress provides the means to express talents and abilities. But continued exposure to negative stress may lower the body’s ability to cope, which may lead to prolonged health issues.

Your signs of stress may be different from someone else’s. Some people get angry. Others have trouble concentrating or making decisions, and still others will develop health problems. The good news is that stress can be managed, according to Ann Marie O’Brien, R.N., National Director of Health Strategies at UnitedHealthcare.

O’Brien offers these five tips to help manage stress:

Take care of yourself Eat healthier, engage in moderate exercise and get enough sleep – all of which can improve your health.

Figure out the source Monitor your mental state throughout the day. Keep a list of the things that create stress. Then develop a plan for dealing with these common stressors.

Do things you enjoy Go to a movie, meet a friend for dinner or participate in an activity that provides relief. Give yourself a break and take time to care about yourself.

Learn relaxation techniques Deep breathing is helpful. Meditation as well as ‘mindfulness techniques’ are becoming increasingly popular at home and in the workplace. You can practice mindfulness while sitting in a quiet place or walking. The key is to focus on your breathing or your steps. The technique may be simple, but achieving the desired result takes practice.

Welcome support Let close friends or relatives know you’re dealing with stress. They may be able to offer help or support that may make a difference.

Remember, stress is your body’s natural defense mechanism, but being under stress for too long can have a serious negative effect on your health. If you notice stress is becoming an issue for you, talk with your doctor.

For more health and wellness tips, visit

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3 TIPS | Reduce Stress, Relax and Unwind 3 TIPS | Reduce Stress, Relax and Unwind

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    • Emily Lowe
    • June 3, 2017

    I really enjoyed this video Sarah, thank you so much! xoxo such an inspiration <3

    • Clare Dean
    • June 3, 2017

    Love you and your channel Sarah! I feel ya on the notebook and lists! So great to write out all those to do's that run through your head! Your videos inspire me to keep trying to be the better version of myself!

    • Sarah Mason
    • June 3, 2017

    Hey Sarah!
    I love your channel!
    Could you do a vlog on rest days and your opinion of them?


    • Janelle Hamilton
    • June 3, 2017

    what are the wireless headphones that you use in this video?

    • Danielle Halsall
    • June 3, 2017

    you looked gorgeous in the no makeup scene!

    • Patty Ho
    • June 3, 2017

    Love this, thank you so much!

    • Allie Joséphine
    • June 3, 2017

    I definitely want to make sure I don't spend too much time on screen when I am trying to relax! the facial tipis a good idea

    • Natalia Sosa
    • June 3, 2017

    your the best sarah!

    • Bristol Best
    • June 3, 2017

    Hey Sarah! What foundation do you use?
    Also thank you for sharing this, I'm going to try the app for meditation because I'm a hyperactive type too haha

    • Rachel Wong
    • June 3, 2017

    New subscriber!! I am obsessed with your channel! I've spent days watching your older videos! You motivate me to get fit and healthy which I'm so thankful for! You're so genuine, beautiful and kind. You're a wonderful role model. Thank you for helping me on my fitness journey. Sending love from California!

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