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Wellness

One of the most powerful books I have read!

 

Eric Jensen (2009) -

Teaching with Poverty in Mind: What Being Poor Does to Kids' Brains and What Schools Can Do About it

 

Jensen (2009) lays out the physical and mental impact of prolonged, unaddressed stress, or chronic stress. 

 

 Jensen offers that periods of stress are normal for everyone. Chronic stress, however causes the brain to adapt to negative life experiences; making the brain either over-responsive or under-responsive to life stressors.          

 

Although Jensen was referencing children, research consistently points to the presence of chronic stress in persons of all races and ethnicity; at all ages and at all socioeconomic levels. 

 

Factors that contribute to chronic stress can include unhealthy relationships, socioeconomic concerns, environmental influences, unaddressed health and mental health challenges, and racial trauma.

 

Chronic stress, over time, can result in a wearing away of one's self-esteem, sense of self efficacy, sound decision making, and effective coping skills. 

Stress Management vs Self-care

 

Stress is a situational event that can be prolonged based on current challenges and struggles. At times, intrusive memories of past trauma experiences can also produce stress in our current lives.

 

When in a state of chronic stress, it is difficult to focus on anything but our basic needs - making it harder to manage day to day tasks and responsibilities. Often turning to unhealthy coping skills to get through the day.

 

Self-care is an intentional act of inviting things, people, and experiences into your life that feel gratifying, supportive, and joyful. Moving from "this is what I need to do" to "this is what I want to do".

 

Self care may be considered self-indulgence by some - but self-care is essential to maintaining our mental, physical, and emotional wellbeing.

 

Responding to stress and chronic stress takes work and practice. It requires exploring the cause of stress and examining our relationship to the stressors. This can happen through leaning on supportive relationships, re-working coping skills, and beginning to share our narrative.

 

Ready to manage your stress?                           

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