Some stats:

  1. 1 in 8 Australians report high stress, 1 in 3 experience depression symptoms and 1 in 4 experience anxiety symptoms
  2. Stress makes gastrointestinal disorders, diabetes, heart disease, pain conditions, allergies and asthma worse (through chronic inflammation)
  3. Relaxation can improve sugar control, protective genes that prevent ageing (telomeres) and help fight free radicals (that can cause cancer)
  4. Adding stress management on top of rehabilitation after a heart attack, can reduce further cardiac events by 15%
  5. Wounds take 40% longer to heal during stressful periods in life
  6. Those reporting high stress are twice as likely to get stomach ulcers

Things to do:

  1. Mindfulness meditation can reduce anxiety and depression
  2. Yoga helps diabetes control and quality of life in those with diabetes
  3. Low-fat diet, exercise, stress reduction, and social support has anti-ageing effects (10% lengthening of telomeres)
  4. Other proven techniques – focus on breathing, focus on a body part – tense and release, prayer, tai chi/ qi gong
  5. Boost resilience – connect with friends and family, mindful walking, practise gratitude or random acts of kindness, be positive, pursue hobbies
  6. See your GP or a psychologist if stress is ongoing

References:

  1. Harvard Medical School: Stress Management, Enhance your well-being by reducing stress and building resilience
  2. https://www.psychology.org.au/for-members/publications/inpsych/2011/dec/Stress-and-wellbeing-in-Australia-in-2011-A-state