Tips for Dealing with the Stress of FurloughsIt is a very challenging time for many of us due to the upcoming furloughs. It is important thatwe recognize this challenging time as an opportunity to build our inner strengths. Although itwill be a difficult time for individuals and organizations, we can keep in mind many ways to alle-viate the stress of this challenging, but temporary situation.1. Focus on the positive! Although the situation is difficult, we can remind ourselves that theamount of furlough days has been significantly reduced from 22 days to 11 days.2. We will have more time to spend with friends and family. We also get more time to relax.3. It is an opportunity to review our household budgets and look at areas that we can reducespending. Some of these areas may be cutting back on dining out or reducing the amountof spending on cell phone coverage, TV, movies and internet access. Some of these changesmay even become permanent ways to save money!4. Create a “To Do” list and use the extra time to catch up on some of the things that you mayhave been putting off or didn’t have the time to do.5. Talk about it. It is normal to feel angry, afraid or uncertain. It is important to share your feel-ings about the situation with the individuals that are closest to you.6. Be active! It is important to stay (or get) active especially during times of increased stress.7. Get creative. Look at free or low cost opportunities. This may be cutting coupons, going forwalks, or checking out books from your local library.8. Plan for success. Resilient people view obstacles and setbacks as “challenges” and“opportunities”. We all experience setbacks throughout our life but we can develop strengthduring the most difficult times.9. Look for opportunities to earn extra income to ease the burden. This might include gettingpart-time employment (see supervisor for guidance) or selling unwanted items around thehouse.10. Get help if you need it. We all deal with stress differently, but when the stress beginsto affect your relationships, work, or personal happiness it may be time to seek professionalhelp.For additional information, please contact Joella Gibbs ofBehavioral Health Care Services at 301 677 8647.