Emotional Health

Stress Reduction for Food and Nutrition Professionals

April 18, 2018   /

Reviewed and Updated by Anne Danahy, MS, RDN, LDN

 

No matter what area of dietetics you work in, or how much you love your work, there is bound to be stress in your job. Some of this stress is good. It keeps us motivated to do our best, search for educational opportunities to advance our knowledge and skills, and to stretch to achieve more. However, constant or unmanaged stress can lead to health problems. Accept that it is impossible to avoid stress, and know that it is highly possible to manage it once it has occurred. If you have arrived at or are approaching the point of “too much stress,” continue reading to learn some techniques for reversing the problem.

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Look for the hidden signs

These signs could include:

  • Failing to find things funny, even when others think that they are
  • Acting unusually rude to others
  • Feeling constantly disorganized and/or unproductive
  • Seeming to get angry much more quickly than you used to
  • Eating more than usual, or drinking more alcohol than usual
  • Sleeping more or less than usual, or having poor sleep quality

 

Tips to Manage Your Stress

Focus on the positive

Have gratitude for the good things in your life. If you have trouble doing this, try keeping a “gratitude journal” to help you focus on what is positive in your life.

Choose your fights carefully

Consider how physically and emotionally drained you feel after an argument, and then decide if it is worth the cost to you personally or if it has a greater importance beyond you.

Generally, arguments and confrontations are not beneficial, unless someone:

  • Is doing something unethical
  • Is threatening you or something that you hold dear to you
  • Could hurt yourself or others

Learn effective communication skills

Learn to express your feelings without hostility and anger by practicing effective communication skills. Seminars, books, magazine articles, and videos are available to help you learn these important techniques.

Do not blame yourself

Realize that many things are simply out of your control, and stressing about them will not change the outcome.

 

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