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Under Pressure

How I keep my composure while under stress.

Right now it’s 9:35 PM where I am. I’ve just finished taking a hot, relaxing bath after an extremely rough day.

Besides blogging, writing contributing articles and moderating, I am also a co-founder for a local nonprofit organization that helps young school-age entrepreneurs. In about a week from now, we will be hosting our biggest annual event: a youth entrepreneurship fair where youth from all over our state and surrounding states sell their products and services.

I absolutely love planning this annual youth event! I love seeing the excitement of the youth when they make a sale. The fun and amazement from the community when they hear the stories of how these youth entrepreneurs got started. It makes planning this event so rewarding.

Planning this year’s event is a little different than previous years, with the exception of last year’s event (which was online). Because of the pandemic, our event, which usually takes place in March, takes place this month, on July 17th.

Unfortunately, we’ve been hitting a lot more snags than usual. Many of our senior youth participants have canceled because of timing and schedule conflicts. It’s been harder to get media coverage for our event (which usually we had been able to get media coverage from all TV stations and radio). There has been a lot of miscommunication or no communication at all, from some families of the youth participants. Then there’s the health department requesting extra data and requiring us to implement extra procedures from kids who only plan to sell drinks and packaged sweet treats.

Today, I was really under pressure and at my breaking point. Between following up with parents who I have not heard from since the pandemic contacting us two weeks before the event, the last minute cancellations, the health department breathing down our backs, following up with the TV and newspaper stations, making sure my kids are not killing each other and trying to work on blogging and posting, I was angry, frustrated and depleted. Every ounce of me wanted to explicitly express how I felt at that moment.

Needless to say, it has been rough experience for me and my colleagues.

Instead of losing my cool, I’ve stopped everything I was doing, changed into some walking gear and walked. I didn’t care what was happening at the moment. I knew that I needed to pause in order to keep my composure. Fifteen minutes later, I returned home and resumed work with a sound mind. I was able to solve all of the issues that I could with kindness and patience.

A brisk walk is one of the newest ways that I’ve been managing my stress. Besides exercise and diet, managing stress is a huge component of diabetes management. All of us have experienced various forms of stress, including personal, interpersonal and environmental.

For those of us living with diabetes, stress can make it more difficult to manage our condition. Stress disrupts our daily routines and causes fluctuations in our blood sugar levels. Stress increases our blood pressure and raises heart rate, resulting in rising blood sugar levels.

If you find yourself in a stressful situation or environment, remember, everything doesn’t require a response. Try these healthy strategies to help manage stress:

Pause and rest

Stop everything you’re doing and take a break. Check out my previous post about my thoughts on this here: http://geneticdiabetic.home.blog/2021/06/29/pause-and-rest/

Continue to take care of yourself

Continue to eat nourishing foods that boosts your energy. Take your medication and vitamins as directed.

Get moving

Take a walk or run around the neighborhood or park. Dance or lift weighs. Staying active helps relieves stress by increasing your endorphins.

Do relaxation exercises

Deep breathing signals your brain to calm down and relax.

Meditation and prayer

Feeding your soul really helps with managing stress. Find out what I do to feed my soul here: http://geneticdiabetic.home.blog/2021/06/05/feeding-your-soul/

Talk it out

Talk to a trusted family member or friend. You can also join a support group or seek professional help.

Have a good laugh!

Laughter is an awesome stress reliever and it’s good for the soul!

Have a good cry

There is a lot of healing that takes place when you shed a few tears.

The next time you find yourself enormously under pressure, put these strategies into action! I encourage you to do what I like to call the PURE method:

Pause what you’re doing

Use your stress management strategies

Regain your composure

Establish a new game plan to help relieve the stress in your situation

Unfortunately, stress cannot be avoided. However, how we cope and respond to the stressors make a huge impact when it comes to managing diabetes and our overall health.

Until Next Time,

The Genetic Diabetic

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