MEN & STRESS
MEN & STRESS
If you Google the topic, “Men & Stress” you will find an article that has a list of ways that men can relieve stress and maintain a healthy life. I was reading this and found in very interesting when I took the same bullet points and apply it to men striving to walk by Faith. Here is what I came up with the words that stated “stress” have now been replaced by the word “Sin”. Please see below:
· Maintain a healthy diet . Your body will not be able to handle SIN and will be more susceptible to the negative effects of SIN-if you're malnourished. You should eat regularly and choose foods that have important health benefits: fruits and vegetables that are rich in vitamins; whole grains that provide your body with complex carbohydrates and fiber; and lean meats and low-fat dairy for good sources of protein to keep your muscles strong. BIBLICAL APPLICATION: Read the Bible Daily. Eat it, memorize it and apply it to your everyday life.
· Exercise regularly. If it seems like men suffer from more SIN today than they did generations ago, it's probably true. When hard work in the form of physical labor was part of a man's daily routine, he was able to relieve any SIN by sweating it out. When the body works hard during exercise, it produces the same physical effects as if it were "fighting" an imposing stressor. Because so many men today lead such sedentary lives, SIN can build up and take its toll on our health. Be sure to get 30 minutes of aerobic exercise on most if not all days of the week, and practice some form of strength training on at least two nonconsecutive days. BIBLICAL APPLICATION: Pray Continually. The more you exercise in prayer the less likely you are to fall into greater temptation and the benefits of prayer are endless.
· Limit or avoid caffeine, nicotine and alcohol. Stimulants like caffeine and nicotine cause your heart rate to increase and, as a result, make SIN worse. All three-caffeine, nicotine and alcohol-can disrupt sleep, which is important in helping the body resist SIN. Most men need between seven and eight hours of sleep each night to be fully rested. Smoking and other tobacco products also increase your risk of heart disease and some types of cancer. BIBLICAL APPLICATION: Read Galatians Chapter 5 and avoid sexual immorality and the ways of the Sinful Nature
· Don't use recreational drugs. Drugs like cocaine and amphetamines, as well as some over-the-counter drugs like cold medicines and decongestants, can lead to symptoms of anxiety due to side effects or withdrawal from the drug. Drug addictions can also put a strain on the relationships in your life, which can lead to prolonged SIN. BIBLICAL APPLICATION: Don’t use drugs and avoid temptations- the Bible is clear when you encounter temptation and sin – IT SAYS FLEE.
· Prioritize. If you're like most men, your life is busy. Learn how to prioritize all that you have to do. Have reasonable expectations and set achievable goals and deadlines. It's not reasonable to think that you can do everything for everybody. BIBLICAL APPLICATION: Not much to change here – this is spot on to godless chatter (and idle time)
· Unplug. We live in an age where we are always accessible-e-mail, cell phones, Blackberries. Remember that these devices are intended to help us, not trap us. Sometimes it's okay to not answer the phone or wait to respond to an e-mail. If you're feeling overwhelmed, unplug and set aside an hour or two each day to return phone calls and answer e-mails. BIBLICAL APPLICATION: We all need quiet time to spend with our Father in Heaven. Pray and meditate and yield to the Holy Spirit’s guidance in our daily lives.
· Stay connected. Seems contradictory to the previous recommendation, but it's not. Staying connected means keeping in touch with the people who make up your support network: family, friends, neighbors-anyone who serves as a confidant or makes you feel relaxed and happy. When life gets hectic, it's easy to let these relationships go unattended. Avoid this pitfall by setting up regular time to be with your family and go out with friends. BIBLICAL APPLICATION: We all need community and we should all help carry each other’s burdens.
· Develop hobbies. Think of hobbies as entertaining (and safe) distractions. Play golf, go fishing, join a book club, work on cars, go hiking, take up gardening-find an activity that you like doing and stick with it. BIBLICAL APPLICATION: Find a mentor (an Elijah) and also find a mentee (a Timothy)…This is called discipleship.
· Think positive. As cliché as it may sound, maintaining a positive outlook can help reduce stress. Try to stop negative thoughts before they get out of control. BIBLICAL APPLICATION: If God is for us, then who can be against us. Purify your hearts and repent of unrepentant sin.
· Practice relaxation techniques. There are many different relaxation techniques you can do to reduce SIN. Some include meditation, guided imagery, progressive muscle relaxation, deep breathing… BIBLICAL APPLICATION: Read the Bible, Pray Continually throughout the day, find quite time and sharpen yourself with other godly men – as Iron Sharpens Iron…