Tag Archives: Stress

Motivation Mondays: The Stress Factor

Last week, the world lost a Hollywood icon: James Gandolfini. He passed away suddenly from a heart attack while vacationing in Italy with her son and sister. He was only 51 years old.

Gandolfini was most infamously known as Tony Soprano, the lead mobster from New Jersey, on the hit HBO series The Sopranos. He had other movie roles, most recently the C.I.A. director in Zero Dark Thirty as well as a role on Broadway. He was known as a gentle giant who loved his family, friends and being Italian. As an avid Sopranos fan, I was saddened by his death but it also served as a wake-up call.

gandolfiniGandolfini was a younger man, who wasn’t sick and had plenty of living left to do. Yet, in an instance, he was taken away from his family and friends. Anyone who knew Tony Soprano knew he was a big guy.  As an Italian, he loved his pasta and wine too. His presumed weight problem coupled with the stress of being a Hollywood star unfortunately were a lethal combination. I’ve seen this pairing too often in my own life. My grandfather passed away from a massive heart attack at the age of 47. This past December, my 42 year-old cousin died the same way. All were taken too soon.

Weight is a constant battle for me as well as most of my family members. Actually, weight in general is probably something most of the world struggles with. No one should obsess but everyone should be conscious of their weight, cholesterol and blood pressure. Working out regularly and eating healthy helps you maintain a healthy weight. But what about the stress factor?

Stress is almost just as bad as eating poorly and being a couch potato. But, in my opinion, it is not as easy to manage as counting calories or hitting the gym. Stress puts undo pressure on all parts of your body: your muscles tense up, your heart rate increases and digestive problems develop. The longer you let stress affect you, the more prevalent these issues become.

So, here’s the deal: we all need to commit to managing our stress better. A couple of ways to handlestress stress better include:

  • Pinpoint exactly what stresses you out and choose a couple of ways to deal with the problem. Even write them out to glance at when the problem occurs.
  • Close your eyes and take some deeps breathes.
  • Leave your desk and go for a walk.
  • Set boundaries and stick to them.
  • Surround yourself with positive people.
  • LAUGH more 🙂

The death of James Gandolfini should be a reminder to all of us that stress negatively impacts our health regardless of how old we are. Making the changes will be hard but will be totally worth it. Check out the clip below of the gentle giant, Gandolfini on Sesame Street.

Motivation Mondays: Sweet Silver Lining

I will admit and completely own that I was a cranky pants this past week. Work is insanely busy which is awesome but also exhausting. I have a bunch of exciting events coming up with my family and friends that require planning, coordinating and purchasing things. I certainly felt like time escaped me this weeks, like running so fast in quick sand and getting no where.

As Friday came and I ended my work week, I thought about what felt like the longest five days of my life. Yes, it was busy. Yes, it was stressful and yes, I felt like there was zero time to get anything done. BUT looking back, there were some sweet silver lining moments:

– The sun shined really bright this week. Maybe not every day, but at least a few.

Layout 1– The girls on my team at work are exceptional and made me feel like a rockstar this week, even after a few learning curve mistakes.

– Someone took the time out of their day to give me constructive feedback that I found very helpful.

– I sat on my couch Saturday night and did absolutely nothing. Hello paradise.

– Nana was the happiest I’ve seen her in months yesterday, with her daughters, grandchildren and a home-cooked meal before her. She was beaming, despite being in a neck brace and having a broken arm.

When you look at these instances, they are truly little moments; no major life-changing events or celebrity sightings. While during the week it was hard to see these moments, looking back, it’s times like these that are the most special and most memorable. No matter how rough your week or how bad your life seems, there’s always a sweet silver lining hidden somewhere. Remember to look for and be grateful for them.

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