Harvest Brings Stress
September 2, 2020
Harvest and haying time is always a stressful time. It's hot, sweltering, equipment breaks down, and everyone is exhausted! We have little time to take a break, little time to get a good night's sleep. This year is more stressful than most. We have poor prices, and grass hopers by the millions! The political bickering is getting out of hand. Political maneuvering is more than outspoken. It's downright ugly. And then you add COVID, not necessarily massive in our area, but it affects food and cleaning supplies, and the ability to get parts for equipment in a timely manner. Plus, neighbors disagree on how to handle it best.
I am not an expert in stress management, but I did some research and thought I would report what I read. It is important we take care of ourselves and finding a way to recuperate is also the safest way not to have farm accidents.
I was reading a special Time report on stress, and it reminded me that continued stress causes physical problems. Lifting objects too heavy for your back has given many rural people bad backs. Overuse of any body part can cause Bursitis, Tendinosis, Carpal tunnel syndrome, and a few other syndromes I had never heard of. Golfer's elbow from the constant use of one's arms.
Stress causes high blood pressure. Yes, sometimes stress is exactly what you need to get things done, but constant stress can cause higher blood pressure, and we don't even know it. If you've been under stress, have your blood pressure checked.a
Often under stress, we can feel like we are all alone. Like no one would understand. Find a good supportive family member or friend. You can feel broken, but you aren't broken. It's essential to reach out to someone who can help you release the pressure you are feeling.
Oprah Winfrey once said, "The reason why you're always stressed is because you want this moment to be something that it's not. You just stop, and you accept this moment for what it is. Just breather right into that moment, and it takes the anxiety and the pressure away of wanting this moment to be something it's not. Just take this moment, one moment at a time. It is a process. It is not just one thing. You don't wake up one morning, and you suddenly have it all together."
The key, even during this year, is to find a balance. Helping you to do that is eating nutritionally, exercising, and meditating, according to Emily Joshu. She took a survey ad discovered, "38% of adults who say they have overeaten or eaten unhealthy foods is because of stress. 53% of adults who say they exercise to manage their stress. 72% of Americans reported feeling stressed about money at least some of the time during the past month. 31% of the workers saw a decrease in stress after adopting a program that included meditation."
According to Audrey Noble, there are simple ways to manage your mood. "Focus on intention, set realistic expectations, find a confidant, write it down, seek peach and love, change your mindset."
Get a pet!
According to Liz Fosslien and Mollie West Duffy, obsessive negative thinking can sabotage our ability to focus on solutions. You have to reframe your attitude. According to them, there "are three P's we tend to focus on after a negative event; Personalization; thinking that the event is all your fault. Pervasiveness: thinking that the event is going to ruin every aspect of our life. Permanence: thinking that you are going to feel like this (e.g., bad) forever."
According to Eileen Daspin, "Regardless of your political learning, their no escaping the feelings of worry and frustration that come with today's volatile headlines." I've heard it over and over from both sides of the aisle. This year's political battles are stressful.
Steve Leder says, "Even if you aren't religious, taking a day off every week to completely unwind can bring emotional and spiritual rejuvenation.
Finding time for music and art, allowing for your expression of emotions, can release stress levels.
Lastly, this is a long article to say. We need to find ways to laugh with each other. The Mountaineer would love someone to step up and contribute some jokes or cartoons regularly.