The holidays are meant to be a joyous time shared with friends, family, and coworkers. However, many things can take a toll on your emotional health. Job loss or job insecurity, financial woes, loss of health or a loved one can cause depression, anxiety, and feelings...
5 Steps to Help You Navigate These Challenging Times
You are not alone. We are all feeling tensions both globally and at home. We are on the precipice of World War 3, out of control energy and food prices, still reeling from the pandemic, layoffs, consumer debt hitting record highs, severe weather extremes, supply chains disrupted leading to drug and medical supply shortages- these are affecting all our lives. No one is immune to this assault.
To overcome and eventually prosper in this ever changing landscape, we must be solution oriented. Difficult times are here, and it doesn’t look like our “normal” will be returning anytime soon. Our families, communities and our very lives depend on how we face the challenges we are experiencing and will be experiencing over the coming months and years.
Below are 5 steps to guide you through these rocky times.
- Focus on solutions
- “We become what we think about” Earl Nightingale
- “When you focus on problems, you get more problems. When you focus on possibilities, you have more opportunities.” Zig Ziglar
- “Good health is true wealth.” – Urijah Faber “
What challenges are you and your family facing right now? Financial? Health related? Whatever the challenge is there is a solution. We need to acknowledge our problems, shortcomings and unexpected turns our lives take. Absorb and realize the impact these have in our daily living. However it isn’t healthy for you or anyone around us to dwell too long in this. Focus on possibilities. This will lead to opportunities.
2. Plan success = Reduce stress
Solutions start with a realistic plan
Take time out, away from the noise of media, work, and technology each week. Set priorities to work on during the week. Start each day reviewing this list, set aside time for tasks that take precedent over others. Review your plan and goals. Make sure they are realistic and allow enough time to implement them. What can you do NOW that can make your day run smoother and more efficiently? Prioritize your days tasks; work towards accomplishing them. Move undone tasks to the next day. And so on.
Download our Goal Setting PDF to help you make and track your goals!
Finances-a major stressor
The out-of-control gas, energy and food prices have caught many off guard. You are not alone.
Financial Stress Has a Surprising Link to People’s Health, Relationships, Sleep, and More according to a white paper by Thriving Wallet, Discover and Thrive Global. Their survey included 3,000 adults. 90 percent stated that finances played a major part in wellbeing and stress levels.
If you are experiencing financial struggles, there are agencies that can help you budget and plan your finances. Consumer Review lists the top 7 financial consolidation companies. They work with you to consolidate and work with companies you owe money to. Some offer financial coaching and budget planning and clasess on financial education.
If you are having difficulty affording your prescription drugs, paying for insurance and copays, office visits, etc check with your local care provider and county health and welfare offices for any programs you may qualify for.
Physical health-If you are out of shape, work on an exercise and diet program with your healthcare provider. Many chronic health conditions respond positively to lifestyle and food choices. Reduce or eliminate alcohol. Alcohol has empty calories and is a depressant. In some cases, lifestyle changes can reduce or eliminate the need for prescription drugs.
Check out online exercise classes- You Tube has many classes geared for beginner to advanced levels. These are free, easily accessed and can be done around your schedule. Plan meals. Restaurant food is convenient but expensive and in many cases not as good tasting or nutritious as a home cooked meal. Make a meal plan and grocery list and don’t shop when hungry.
Emotional health– If you are experiencing anxiety, are depressed, or feeling stressed talk your healthcare provider. Find meaningful work, volunteer, or take up a hobby. Plan a coffee date with a friend. We are wired for connection. Deep breathing exercises along with mediation or prayer can have profound effects on our health.
Be prepared for minor emergencies
Urgent care visits may or may not be entirely covered by your health insurance. Depending on deductible you may have to pay out of pocket for the visit. As of this writing, the cost of an urgent care visit, without tests or treatments is a minimum of 75 dollars. Having basic knowledge and supplies for minor emergencies can reduce cost, exposure to diseases, travel time and cost(gas). Enroll in a basic first aid and cpr class if you aren’t medically trained. Keep an updated list of medications, medical conditions and allergies for all members of the family readily available. Look into telehealth visits for minor emergencies. Keep your medical supply kit stocked. In addition, a Jase case , contains antibiotics that cover a wide variety of infections, along with a consultation with a doctor if you have questions. This alone can keep you or your loved one out of the doctor’s office and on the road to recovery.
3. Implement plan- the most important step
A well thought out plan will free up time in your day to reach your goals. Taking charge of your finances will reduce stress and free up cash for necessities. Health is wealth, don’t neglect your health! Carve out time each day to put your plan in place. Stick to the plan, revise as necessary. The most important part is consistency.
4. Assess plan-weekly
Set aside time for assessing your plan. Did you reach your goals? If not, why? What barriers did you encounter? What went well? Were you able to free up time in your day for exercise or hobby? Assess your plan at least once a week will help you tweak and improve your plan and reach your goals.
5. Adjust and revise as necessary- or the only thing consistent in life is change
Plans are not meant to be set in stone. What worked well one day or week may not work at all for the following week. Schedules change- planned and unplanned events and life-come and go. If you get off track, jump back in. You will reach your goals!
- Brooke Lounsbury, RN
Medical Content Writer
Keeping you informed and safe.
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