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Everyday Strong: Take time for yourself and don’t overstress

By Samaria Gonzalez - United Way of Utah County | Mar 26, 2022

Joe Buglewicz, Associated Press

A man lies on the Neurosonic Wave mattress at the Neurosonic booth during the CES tech show Wednesday, Jan. 5, 2022, in Las Vegas. The mattress emits low frequency vibrations for relaxation.

How often do you consider your own needs? Is it difficult for you to dedicate time for yourself? That is normal. As humans — and especially as parents — we put our children’s and family’s needs before our own. However, we are allowed to set time aside for ourselves when we need it.

Just like your children need time and love, so do you. It may be difficult at times because you do not want to be selfish. However, when you do not allow yourself the self-care and self-love your body needs, it sends your nervous system into overdrive.

When you are constantly getting angry or upset, it stimulates your nervous system. When your nervous system is constantly being stimulated, it is harmful to your body. It becomes harder and harder to bring your blood pressure and your heart rate down. Thus, harming your overall health. This could be traumatic for your body if your nervous system continues to be overwhelmed.

That is why it is important for you to not let anger take over your emotions. Learn how to control your emotions or set time apart for yourself. When your nervous system is constantly being stimulated it becomes harder to bring it back down to normal. Often it is referred to as the “fight or flight” response. When you are in a situation that stimulates your nervous system you can either fight or run away from the stimulation.

Often we may not recognize these responses from our nervous system, but over time it causes body trauma. Trauma is very difficult to overcome. That is why it is so important for you to set time for yourself. There are several ways to control yourself when you start to feel angry or upset.

The littlest things may upset you. That’s okay. We’re all human and it happens to the best of us. We may have those days, weeks, or months where we feel that everything is just setting us over the edge. Don’t feel guilty. It’s okay. It’s better to acknowledge those feelings than just ignore them.

Some ways to help you feel grounded are trying to be in the present. For example, this could be demonstrated by identifying a smell, a sound and something you see. This helps you come back to the present and recognize the things around you. You become more aware of your surroundings and help you calm down.

Another way to help yourself calm your nervous system is by taking deep breaths. This one is easy and helps you calm down. In addition, this helps relax your body and think more clearly. When you get overwhelmed, and your nervous system gets stimulated then your thinking and judgment get clouded. Take the extra step to just take a deep breath and remember where you are and calm yourself.

Ground yourself. Do what helps you. Some of these suggestions may not work for you and that is okay. Some people may feel relaxed when they listen to music, or just have a seat, or have a glass of water. Whatever helps you calm down. Take the time to learn what helps you! Do not feel bad for taking the time you need for yourself. To learn more listen to Everyday Strong’s Mini-Episode “How to be less Angry.” You can listen to it online at http://anchor.fm/dashboard/episode/e1f8mqd


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