How do you manage stress and anxiety?

“As a coach, I often encounter clients who struggle with stress, anxiety and sometimes even depression, do you ever?”. This was the question I posed to my colleague and friend earlier this year. He responded quickly and without thinking much about it “all the time!”. He actually admitted to have suffered himself from these conditions and shared some of the struggles he had in the past. Some serious struggles that progressed into suicidal thoughts. He, I’ll call him “Patrick” and he’s not alone! It’s so interesting to me that people are so open to talk about this now, which is a positive thing and so important in order for them to get the help they need.

More and more people are reaching out to me with similar situations making it necessary to research and find resources to help them. So I immediately asked Patrick what resources he used to help himself.

Without hesitation, Patrick mentioned three things that helped him get out of this condition:

1. Faith 2.Support Group 3. Hobby

I believe he got the order of priority right! Without faith is impossible to please God and He gives us hope and happiness when we feel lonely, when people hurt us, when we think we’ve failed, when we don’t think there’s a solution for our problems, etc. I truly admire people that understand the importance of admitting how far they have gotten from God and how close they need to be. Giving priority to our spiritual life is a must for all of us especially when we understand that nothing can separate us from his love. One of my mom’s favorite verses that reminds me this truth constantly is found in Romans 8:38-39 “And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

Where can you find a support group? This is such an important part of someone’s mental wellness. It could be as simple as a friend or a family member staying close and reaching out. I recently was approached to help with a situation that involves a young lady who is affected by the opioids epidemic and depression. She wishes to be admitted to a treatment center and get the help she needs. I found out that the organization whose providing the treatment is more likely to be able to admit her if she’s connected to a “support group” preferably from a church who offers resources to help her after she goes through the program. I can certainly see the benefit of a support group here.

I agree with “Patrick” that having a hobby would help. Doing something you enjoy consistently helps you to relief the stress and anxiety you may be feeling. I personally love to spend time with my immediate family, exercise, read and travel. Staying active gives you a sense of fulfillment.

The fourth one I mentioned I added is a resource that has helped me to understand the importance of having a balanced Gut-Brain-Axis. The science behind this theory is helping my clients’ body, brain and biome become healthier which consequently improves the anxiety, stress and depression levels but more importantly, even those people that don’t suffer from these conditions feel amazingly better. If you personally don’t suffer form this, pass on this information, be that support that someone may need and look into becoming part of the mental wellness industry! Be well and stay close.