Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Our last Club

Last night we had our last Club for 2008, and we had a really good turn out. The past couple weeks we have just had one big group for discussions, but this week we were able to go back to 2 groups! I think the theme for the night was part of the reason we had so many people come... who doesn´t have stress, and who doesn´t want to get rid of it???

So, Matt led us in our evening of Stress. He talked about how it impacts all levels of life.

- the individual experiences the effects of stress. It takes a toll on our minds, bodies and spirits.

- stress causes physical problems such as hyper tension, migraines, joint pain, back aches

- emotionally stress is linked to depression, substance abuse, and feelings of anger, frustration and hopelessness

- stress has a negative impact on the workplace and economy. The World Health Organization says that stress is a "worldwide epidemic". Statistics Canada says that 40% of job turnover is stress related and stress costs the Canadian economy $12 million each year. The American economy loses $300 billion each year.

- it impacts interpersonal relationships. How many fights have we had because one person was a little stressed out

Stress does not always come from negative events. Any change and the adaptation it requires can cause stress. Stress can be a part of adapting to any change - good or bad. Sometimes even thinking about these changes can cause stress.

Then we did a stress test... 2 dolphins, how many differences do you see? The more you see, the more stressed you are!

Then we watched the response of some people to stress...
Which brought us to our first discussion....
- What are your stressors?
- What causes you stress?
- How do you know when you are experiencing stress? What is your pattern of stress.
- How do you react to it?

Then we wanted to talk about ways of dealing with stress...
- Try being active. Exercise and physical activity releases endorphins that naturally combat stress and puts tense muscles to work. Being physically tired may also help you sleep
- A little emotional release can be a good thing: crying and laughing releases the same endorphins
- Watch a funny movie / sad movie. go to see a comedian. go somewhere private and let yourself cry etc.
- A hobby or project to direct your energies into and take your mind off of things.
-foods rich in antioxidants are good: Potatoes, cantaloupe, strawberries, raw cabbage and citrus fruits
-Magnesium helps a lot to manage your stress level. Green vegetables like spinach, almonds and seeds are the best source of magnesium.
- Use time management techniques like using a calendar or writing yourself reminder notes / plan your day ahead to be efficient
- Try a new, creative idea to an old problem (even if it seems a bit crazy)

here´s one more method....

Discussion 2:
- How do you cope with stress?
- How should you cope with stress?
- How do you see other people coping with stress?
- What helps you best to cope with stress

Then Matt told us about how he was so stressed once that his eye started twitching, but he was still in denial that he had stress! That is, until his wife sat him down and told him the truth about his state, and he was able to confront his stress and do something to change the situation!

Then, we discussed another method of dealing with stress... which is to eat cookies! So, we did!

This was our last club for this year, but we are already excited for our FIRST CLUB of 2009 which will be on 17.02 at 18:30. Thank you for praying for this Club! I hope you were able to get a good feel for the tone of our clubs!

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