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Hw410 unit9 finalproject.doc
Hw410 unit9 finalproject.doc
Hw410 unit9 finalproject.doc
Hw410 unit9 finalproject.doc
Hw410 unit9 finalproject.doc
Hw410 unit9 finalproject.doc
Hw410 unit9 finalproject.doc
Hw410 unit9 finalproject.doc
Hw410 unit9 finalproject.doc
Hw410 unit9 finalproject.doc
Hw410 unit9 finalproject.doc
Hw410 unit9 finalproject.doc
Hw410 unit9 finalproject.doc
Hw410 unit9 finalproject.doc
Hw410 unit9 finalproject.doc
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Hw410 unit9 finalproject.doc

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  • 1. HW410 Stress: Critical Issues in Management and Prevention Gabriel J. Wigington Kaplan University May 16, 2013 HW410-S01 “Stress Management and Prevention Program Resource Guide”
  • 2. Table of Contents: Unit 1: The Nature of Stress Information to Remember Resources: Exercises: Exercises Tools: Journal Writing: Journal Writing Unit 2: The Physiology of Stress Information to Remember Resources: Exercises: Exercises Tools: Journal Writing: Journal Writing Unit 3: Psychology of Stress Information to Remember Resources: Exercises: Exercises Tools: Journal Writing: Journal Writing Unit 4: Personality Traits and the Human Spirituality Information to Remember Resources: Exercises: Exercises Tools: Journal Writing: Journal Writing Unit 5: Dealing with Stress: Coping Strategies Information to Remember: Resources: Exercises: Exercises Tools: Journal Writing: Journal Writing
  • 3. Unit 6: Relaxation Techniques: Meditation, Breathing, and Visual Imagery Information to Remember Resources: Exercises: Exercise Tools: Journal Writing: Journal Writing Unit 7: Nutrition and Stress Information to Remember Resources: Exercises: Exercises Tools: Journal Writing: Journal Writing Unit 8: Physical Exercise and Activity Information to Remember Resources: Exercises: Exercises Tools: Journal Writing: Journal Writing Unit 9: Applying Stress: Critical Management/Prevention to your Professional Life Information To Remember Resources: Exercises: Exercises Tools: Journal Writing: Journal Writing Resources: Exercises: Exercises Tools: Journal Writing: Journal Writing Additional Information “End of Stress Management Guide”
  • 4. Unit 1: The Nature of Stress Information to Remember: Key Learning Point#1: Stress is an inability to cope with life’s problems- (Seaward, Selye Managing Stress p.5,6, 2006) point out that stress is a person’s perceived or imagined threat. The human body creates a hormonal response that is different based upon whether the stressor is a positive or negative one. Newer medicinal studies have revealed that stress affects not only our physical body but the entire person as a whole. The key is how a person perceives a situation or event may be entirely different from someone else’s perception of the same event. This is why effective coping skills are valuable. Key Learning Point#2: Job Stress results in chronic illness and increased economic costs- Stress Facts. (n.d.) Stress Facts: Costs of Job Stress. Retrieved July 18, 2008 from http://faculty.css.edu/dswenson/web/Stress/stressfacts.html This study shows job stress from absenteeism, employee turnover, medical, legal, and insurance fees, and lack of productivity are just a few areas that are estimated to cost the American workforce industry about $300 billion annually! To give a ballpark idea, chronic job related stress cost $50-$80 billion per year which is about $750 per person. A large percentage of this is due to elevated depression and anxiety levels from being overworked without sufficient recovery time or positive life events. 60%080% of all accidents are stress related and healthcare is affected greatly by these statistics which I believe perpetuates greater economic problems. Key Learning Point#3: Stressors are the sources that cause stress and can come in many types- Types of stressors include environmental, financial, social, psychological, physiological, and interpersonal. Depending on the type, a person may have a different need in order to cope with and recover from. Sunlight, gravitational pull, and electromagnetic fields are examples of environmental stressors which can throw off our circadian rhythms that are very important to our sleep cycle. Psycho-intrapersonal stressors involve thoughts, beliefs, attitudes, and values that we use to identify or defend our ego. These stressors affect unique parts of our personality and make it imperative to intercept a stressor in the mind before it results in an increase in stress hormones being released in the physical body. Social influence can include financial insecurity, relocation effects, violation of human rights, and low socioeconomic class. Resources: Exercise: Exercise1.1-Are You Stressed? I included this specific exercise because it helped me to assess where I am currently at in terms of stressors in my life. It’s imperative to identify where you are currently in order to make progress through improving how we cope with this areas of stress. This is a basic guide to give an idea of and connect with what frustrates you the most. Exercise 1.3-Self Assessment: Poor Sleep Habits Questionnaire-I like this exercise because sleep deprivation is one of the major chronic issues that causes unnecessary stress to pile
  • 5. up in the lives of most people I have come into contact with. I deal with poor sleep myself so it was very helpful to take notice of what small details could be coming in between greater quality sleep and my ability to function optimally every day. Without proper sleep habits we do not improve memory, recover from exercise, or stay youthful while shedding body fat and building lean muscle tissue. Tools: Journal writing: 1.5 Personal Stress Inventory-This exercise helped me to have increased awareness of the specifics in my daily life that may be holding me back from living better as a result of unnecessary suffering. Creating a top ten list of stressors and what type they are is a good practice to maintain throughout life. Whatever we don’t acknowledge, we can’t benefit from. 1.2 My Health Philosophy- This journal was one of my favorites because I believe most people do not take time to analyze what their core values are and go through the daily motions of life without realizing that they are living by default if not on purpose. In other words, we need to cognitively connect regularly with what we value most and what we desire our life to look like. If we do not, then we may allow someone or something else to dictate this for us. It can be a therapeutic activity as well to write out your thoughts and feelings on paper in a journal format so we can express in a healthy way things that may be difficult to say. Unit 2: Physiology of Stress: Key Learning Point#1: Psychophysiology refers to the mind-body connection that has a chain of command series of neural and hormonal events in response to sensory information perceived as a major threat. The brain is where it begins as our command center. This prepares the body for the fight or light response in order to survive. The nervous system and the peripheral nerves are constantly sending messages back and forth in communication. It’s important that we pay attention and listen to these messages our body gives us so we can adapt properly to stressors in order to prevent chronic problems. Key Learning Point#2: The endocrine system consists of many hormonal glands that control many operations inside our body daily. These control our ability to increase muscle mass and decrease body fat. The adrenal glands have a medulla and a cortex. The medulla releases epinephrine and Norepinephrine. The cortex releases the hormone cortisol which is a corticosteroid that prepares the body for fight or flight and also breaks down muscle tissue and can stimulate fat storage. These glucocorticoids are at the root of how stress impacts our mind and body in negative ways that leads to numerous chronic conditions. Key Learning Point#3: Neuroplasticity refers to the brain’s ability to generate new connections to various brain cells and promote new cell growth. Relaxation techniques like mindful meditation and visual imagery can help to improve neuroplasticity. Research has proven that we have unlimited potential to grow mentally through our brain unlike our physical body! Brain research also shows that a region in the brain called the Amygdala is where fear-based memories occur
  • 6. and that the damage done through emotional stress may be irreversible in the brain. Fear may be the #1 culprit to living a low stress quality life. (Seaward ch.2 Managing Stress Ebook) Resources: Exercise 2.2: Immediate, Intermediate, and Prolonged Stress Effects I received great value from doing this exercise because there are different durations of stressors that we perceive ranging from seconds, minutes-to hours, and days at a time depending on their nature. Connecting with how we respond or react mentally, physically, and emotionally to these items can help to reverse the process and perpetuate more eustress (positive) in our lives. Tools: Journal Writing 2.1 Stress Physiology Review- Knowing a bit about which hormones affects what metabolic processes in our body is a very valuable thing to know about whether involved in a health and wellness profession or not. These things affect our daily lives in a great way and can greatly improve our human existence and our interrelationship with others as well. Melatonin is the antioxidant that affects our sleep cycle and serotonin affects mood in the brain. There are certain foods that can activate serotonin like turkey and raw nuts which are also loaded with magnesium. The tryptophan amino acid in these foods has a sleep inducing effect which may improve sleep quality. Our body naturally begins a beautiful array of events as night time approaches near involving the secretion of melatonin that prepares our body for sleep. Unit 3: Psychology of Stress Key learning Point#1 Fight or Flight: Emotions anger and fear are associated with fight/flight response. Anger can include envy, impatience, frustration, jealousy, or rage! Fear can also come in many colors such as doubt, embarrassment, paranoia, and insecurity. These are the two main emotions associated with the fight or flight response and are a major contributor to chronic stress which I believe to be the main culprit of disease and bodily problems in our modern world. Since chronic stressors are at the root of the “Health Crisis” in America, I would say that those who can help guide people in dealing with emotions like anger and fear in a better way would become highly valuable in the marketplace as a professional. I find it very interesting that the average American gets angry about 20 times per day! Key Learning Point#2: Depression is about unresolved anger. Depression medications have become rampant and way too common in American society. These pills I believe do not heal or reverse the condition of depression and simply keep the patient
  • 7. addicted to drugs without real relief from their symptoms. A depressed state is much more than brain chemistry. It involves a depressed state of mind through constantly focusing our thought life on the bad things that happened in our past which can cause a person to dread the upcoming future. The main feature of depression is a loss of pleasure. A person suffering from depression could benefit from opening up to a close friend or psychologist who could actively listen to their problem and provide a healing environment through self-discovery. I believe feeling unloved is one of the main issues here. Depression is also very common following major catastrophic life altering events like divorce or financial bankruptcy. Key Learning Point#3: Spiritual Hunger: High stress levels in a person’s life tend to cause one to seek out spirituality and search for answers to deeper issues within. Many people have shown to become disappointed with traditional religious practices because they are not finding answers to their questions about spirituality. I believe the answers people are looking for we can find in God’s Word, the Bible, and will provide the joy, peace, confidence, courage, and love people need to live a great life. As more problems are perpetuated it becomes more clear who is connected to spiritual growth and who is not. I have visibly noticed how I am a completely different person during times when I have daily fed my mind with the thoughts and ways of God! Despite that textbooks will say there are many paths to enlightenment, I believe there is only 1 way to live an elevated life free from worry, fear, and strife. It’s our job to understand God’s plan so we can follow the pattern He has setup, and receive His promises for our life. Resources: Exercise 5.4 Anger: The Fight Response is one that I picked to include in my stress management assessment because it really helped me to evaluate and be aware of personality types and how I deal with anger typically. Some people punish themselves and others erupt like a volcano spewing ash all over everyone in sight! It’s important to become aware of how we tend to deal with these emotions so that we can learn skillfully how to better process the thoughts, emotions, and behave better in the future. Tools: Journal Writing: 4.1 The Psychology of Your Stress I included because it can improve awareness of attitude and behavior that we show in response to stressors. Whether we get defensive or repress the emotions and not properly deal with them in a mature manner is vital to our overall health and wellbeing. Carl Jung sheds light on how important dreams are to revealing some stress in our lives. I never thought much about dreams honestly before this activity. This is a very valuable tool. Unit 4: Personality Traits and the Human Spirituality Key Learning Point#1: Biology of Anxiety The amygdala is the area of the brain that is activated when fear is present which gains sensory information before it reaches the cortex. I find it fascinating how this brain area will respond
  • 8. with anxiety as an autonomic response to sensory stimuli before we have a conscious awareness of what happened. Glucocorticoid levels affect this process by activating the sympathetic nervous system through the corticotrophin releasing hormone. Key Learning Point#2: Primates show how perception impacts stress response. Sapolsky compares two different baboons that lived totally different. One would see others he encountered as a threat and would see life as 1 big stressor while the other would walk away from confrontation and enjoyed a life with more friends and a youthful old age. Key Learning Point#3: Hostility is a greater cause of cardiovascular disease than most doctors realize! Hostile behavior plays a large impact on the stress response, psychological, and emotional health of an individual. Type “A” personality traits like time urgency, rapid speech, manipulative control, and ultra-competitiveness tend to lead to a hostile aggression that promotes chronic problems as a result of higher stress levels in the blood. These people often times are leaders in business and struggle to deal with others who can’t keep up with their frantic pace of life. I find this important because in western medicine physicians seem to neglect this emotional aspect of heart disease which I believe to be a greater area to address especially with the modern hurried way of living. Resources: Exercise 7.8 Distractions of the Human Path-I picked this exercise because I believe distractions can veer any person off the proper track to get them to their destiny in life. There are so many distractions ranging from movies, television, cellphones, media gadgets, gossiping about others, arguing over small things, internet websites, facebook, and many others. When we are distracted constantly, we don’t keep laser focus that is necessary to achieve our goals daily in a timely fashion. This also can increase stress. Anything can become a distraction after being an attraction at first. We must be aware of when it’s time to cut things out of our life. A leadership- ology I really like is “When you let the wrong things go, you let the wrong things grow.” We need to regularly think about if the activities we are putting our time into daily are producing the results we desire. Tools: Journal Writing 6.1 Under the Gun: Stress and Personality I picked to put into this stress guide because I think it’s more valuable and therapeutic to write out how we feel and get our thoughts on paper in order to release that energy bottled up inside of us. It has helped me in the past when I have done this since my personality type is one that keeps things to myself most of the time as a result of thinking other people don’t care or would not understand. It helps to notice the inner resources we can use to improve in handling the stressor. Unit 5: Dealing with Stress: Coping Strategies Key Learning Point#1: Humor is healing-Humor means fluid or to go with the flow. Sigmund Freud created the relief/release theory. He believed that humor is a natural instinctive response that releases sexual tension in humans. Laughter can strengthen our immune system, release
  • 9. stress, improve oxygen-rich air uptake, and also act as a painkiller! I found this to be vital when dealing with a chronic condition. Key Learning Point#2: Creating a Positive Mindset: Behavioral Medicine shows that the mindset and emotions we choose play a huge role in our capacity to heal the body from illness and injury. Low self-esteem produces tension while being able to let go of past events through an optimistic view is very healthy in the short and long-term. Reframing our thought patterns is an awesome way to help anyone cope with stressors to produce a healthier physical response. Key Learning Point#3: Social Support not only decreases stress/anxiety levels, but is a necessity to achieving anything great in life. As a fitness enthusiast I have noticed over the years that all major fitness programs involve some form of social support to help keep people on the right track. Along our journey in life there will no doubt be moments of frustration and the option to give up on our goals. Through social support anything is possible because it provides a boost when other people believe in you and are rooting for you to win. It’s also a positive benefit when someone who has already been in your shoes can share how they overcame the obstacle you find yourself currently in. Resources: Exercise 9.1 Value Assessment and Clarification: I choose this exercise because until we know what our values are we will not be able to attract the right people into our life and be the right kind of person who will be the best we can possibly be. I believe getting clear on our core values is critical to living with purpose and being content during stressful times also. Unit 6: Relaxation Techniques: Meditation, Breathing, and Mental Imagery Key Learning Point#1: Health benefits of Calmness-Since our muscles are the most frequently targeted organ in the body, muscle tension is thought to be the #1 symptom of stress. A busy 24/7 lifestyle will lead to an overactive stress response with too much sympathetic nervous activity going on and not enough parasympathetic. Excessive wear and tear results from a lack of homeostatic balance. This is why the ability to remain calm in the mind is paramount for an enjoyable life. Key Learning Point#2: Diaphragmatic Breathing is a great therapeutic technique because it calms the body, can release chronic stress and tension, and can decrease oxygen demand on the lungs/heart. Breathing exercises like this will bring us back to a greater state of awareness and distract from the stressors we have been focused on. Key Learning Point#3: Meditation is increased concentration leading to increased awareness. Because of the constant state of media bombardment in American society, it is a valuable relaxation technique to learn meditation. I personally find mindful meditation to work the best because it trains our mind to live in the present and enjoy each moment while cutting out racing
  • 10. random thoughts that do not produce a positive result. It is easy to allow many different thoughts to go on at the same time, but we do have the power of conscious thought and can choose to still and slow our mind down which will produce less anxiety and overwhelmed feelings. Resources: Exercise 18.3 was one I find valuable because since we have a certain areas of our brain that are more dominant it is good to intentionally practice developing certain skills and traits to balance out both hemispheres in our brain. I am very strong in analytical skills and mathematics, but desire to get stronger in the area of emotionality, imagination, and humor. Tools: I included journal writing 20.1 I have a Vision: The Art of Visualization because it was one of my favorite of all the journal activities I have participated in. It helps me tremendously to visualize a beautiful artistic picture or a vision of nature when am in need of relaxation in my mind and creating a positive emotional place. I think we all have moments in our day when our mind and body is exhausted and we just need a break. At any time we can visualize a place of beauty and elegance where we would rather be right now. This has the potential to provide a positive stress response physically and allow for an enjoyable experience that we have created in our own mind as if we were really there living it! How awesome is that? Unit 7: Nutrition and Stress Key Learning Point#1: Great Nutrition has the ability to heal and reverse chronic disease. I have experience this firsthand which is why I can say this statement with confidence. Regardless of what textbooks and internet websites tell us in scholarly form, at the end of the day we must try out different regimens of eating and see how our unique body responds and deals with it. If the body tells us that a certain food is not wanted we will receive signals or messages to become aware of. Many people I personally know have experienced food sensitivities in their gut which prevents optima l body fat loss and can prevent a strong immune system since about 80% lies in our digestive tract. Probiotics are one way to help reverse these symptoms by restoring the gut flora (bacteria) in this area. Key Learning Point#2: Specific foods trigger different hormonal responses. A huge part of becoming a nutrition expert is learning about hormones. They affect most of the metabolic processes that go on daily inside our body. Foods like coffee and chocolate can result in sleep deprivation while sugar itself it actually toxic to our brain and can decrease our memory and mental function. Key learning Point#3: Minerals like Magnesium, calcium, zinc, potassium, and iron are important for our overall health and wellness. Without proper mineral intake and absorption stress can increase along with an increased risk of sickness through a weaker immune system. T cells may become compromised which help to kill off viruses and other pathogens. I personally
  • 11. consume hemp on a daily basis which is loaded with iron, magnesium, and zinc! It is a complete protein which gives me all of the essential amino acids needed for preventing muscle breakdown. Resources: I used Journal Writing 27.3 The Rainbow Diet because it’s eye opening to learn how different colors of food can impact various regions of the body which can heal in different ways. These different foods are full of power and life since they have color in them. I love purple foods like blueberries and Okinawan potatoes because the anthocyanins present provide a high level of nutrients in them. Self-Assessment journal activity 27.2 was a great exercise because becoming aware of our eating patterns and the cognitive thinking associated with it is the first step to making behavior change in this area of health. If I’m guiding a client in nutritional coaching, the first thing I would address is the psychological connection to eating certain foods and their “why” behind their food choices! Unit 8: Physical Exercise and Activity: Key Learning Point#1: Therapeutic health related benefits of exercise are numerous and can be life changing. Decreased heart rate/blood pressure, improved sleep, concentration, lower triglyceride levels, better HDL/LDL cholesterol ratio, increased bone density and muscle tone are all benefits from exercise. Key Learning Point#2: The Parasympathetic Rebound Effect is what separates exercise from other stressors. Yes, exercise does increase stress on the body, but provides numerous positive stressors in the process that radically can improve our health status. The more muscle we possess and the less body fat we have, the healthier we become across the board when discussing clinical blood levels in our body that would prevent disease. Key Learning Point#3: Types of exercise such as Pilates and Yoga have been shown through scientific research to decrease pain in the body and help people cope with chronic pain. I used to do yoga during a time when I was experiencing major chronic pain. I plan on incorporating yoga practice into my life because it helps to improve sleep which is something I need to take seriously. I do recommend it highly as it strengthens our core musculature, can make our limbs flexible, and reduce body fat effectively. Resources: Journal 28.4 My Body’s Rhythms: I included this activity because our biological rhythms are an area that may not receive the necessary focus in the modern western world of medicine. These rhythms are a big contributor to our sleep quality among many other things that go on inside of us every day. This internal clock runs 24 hours a day and is affected by things like gravitational pull, earth’s rotation, sunlight, computers, and changes in temperature. Exercise 28.2: My Body, My Physique was very beneficial to me because it helps increase awareness to how we feel about ourselves. Body image is at the root of many of the choices we
  • 12. make every day in regard to nutrition and activity choices. Marketing takes advantage of this and makes it imperative for professionals do be able to assist clients in creating a healthier self- image about their body. Only then can someone begin to make progress after choosing to see themselves as worthy and valuable. Unit 9: Applying stress to your Professional Life: Key Learning Point#1: Tai Chi is what the Chinese call the subtle energy force that permeates and surrounds us. A congestion of this energy can result in disease according to their beliefs. Creating a balanced and harmonious inner life is the purpose of exercises meant to promote Tai Chi. Key Learning Point#2: Progressive Muscular Relaxation-a technique of muscular contractions used to decrease muscle tension. It is meant to increase awareness and ability to lessen tension through the release of stress. This can be a very effective technique used for those who experience TMJD, insomnia, or desire to cease smoking! Key Learning Point#3: Biofeedback is an effective way to maintain homeostasis. Clinical biofeedback is used which involves machines like an EKG or EEG in order to improve a person’s heart rate, muscle tension, and brain activity physiologically. This can be used to treat Raynaud’s disease and those suffering from severe migraines as well. No exercises/Journals for this unit. Additional Resources: Drug-free ways to alleviate depression: Here are 5 simple things a person can do to improve their depression. 1. Exercise can improve mood via norepinephrine release. 2. Seek professional counseling or find a friend to express emotions to. 3. Keeping a journal or diary can be an effective method for releasing the stress and improving symptoms. 4. Eliminating sugars and processed carbohydrate foods can reverse energy levels, improve mood and mental function. These foods can wreak havoc on blood glucose levels and insulin. 5. Eat more oily fish like sardines, tuna, and halibut and also foods high in vitamin B6. Lentils, meat, and poultry are examples of these foods. http://www.thehealthierlife.co.uk/natural-health- articles/mental-health/mood-boosting-supplements-00914/ (primary source) Strategies for coping with fear following traumatic event: 1. Validate the fear. 2. Share it with others. 3. Find ways to not be alone. 4. Share responsibilities for tasks that seem daunting. 5. Strategize how to react during crisis. 6. Create a safe environment. 7. Gain accurate information about the trauma. 8. Recognize
  • 13. normal reactions to fear. 9. Realize what you don’t have control over. 10. Time passed will decrease fear response. http://www.counselingcenter.illinois.edu/?page_id=315 (primary source) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=565TRZfOg8M (secondary source) Common link to mass murders in schools by children is the violence we’re exposed to through Television/Media!!! I included this you tube video because violence in schools has transformed safety and security in our nation and we no longer live in a safe world where we can have confidence that weapons are not rampant everywhere we go. Awareness is vital in order for change to happen for the betterment of people.
  • 14. “References” 1. Managing Stress E-book by Seaward. 2. “Why Zebras Don’t Get Ulcers,” by Robert M. Sapolsky. 3. http://www.thehealthierlife.co.uk/natural-health-articles/mental-health/mood- boosting-supplements-00914/ (primary source) 4. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=565TRZfOg8M (secondary source) 5. http://www.counselingcenter.illinois.edu/?page_id=315 (primary source) 6. http://faculty.css.edu/dswenson/web/Stress/stressfacts.html (primary source)

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