What is self-care?

Self-care is a mental health measure that employees take on their own. Signs of mental illness initially manifest as simple physical fatigue, behavioural, and mental changes. There are few cases of sudden serious illness, and in most cases, mild symptoms occur. So it is often the case that even the person himself/herself does not notice without knowledge of mental health.
However, if companies provide appropriate mental health education, individual employees will be able to detect any changes in their minds and bodies early and take measures on their own.

  • Awareness and coping with stress

“Self-care” is listed as one of the four mental health care in “Guidelines for maintaining and improving the mental health of workers” (Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare, published in 2006). In mental health promotion, it is important for workers themselves to be aware of stress, acquire the knowledge and methods to deal with it. And implement it. In order to be aware of stress. It is important to understand the stress response to stress factors and mental health and to be able to correctly recognize your own stress and mental health.

  • Mental and physical reactions due to stress

Responses to stress can be broadly divided into three aspects: psychological, physical, and behavioural. Psychological stress responses include anxiety and depression (depressed mood, decreased interest/interest), irritability, decreased motivation, and decreased concentration. Physical stress reactions include sleeplessness (difficulty falling asleep) and awakening (wake up in the middle of the night), easy fatigue, headache and stiff shoulders, low back pain, eye fatigue, dizziness and palpitation, and abdominal pain.

There are various symptoms such as loss of appetite, constipation and diarrhoea. Behavioural stress responses include increased drunkenness and smoking, increased appetite, withdrawal, increased absenteeism and lateness, and increased work mistakes and hilarious hats.

If stress is dealt with appropriately, these stress responses will gradually decrease and improve. However, if it lasts for a long time, it may be a sign of overstress. It is recommended that you look back on your daily life and devise a method (coping) to deal with stress well. In addition, if the severity of these symptoms is severe or persists for a long period of time, it is recommended to consult a specialist (psychiatry, psychosomatic medicine).

  • How to deal with stress

People tend to have a negative image when it comes to stress, but stress itself is not bad. Stress is simply tension and relaxation. It depends on the person, whether he/she feels tension (stress) in the same situation, or whether he/she considers it as an opportunity for personal challenge and leads to growth, a sense of accomplishment, and self-confidence.

Also, even for the same person, the way of thinking changes depending on the age, years of work experience, surrounding environment, etc. For example, many people may say that the night shift, which was fine when they were young, became a burden as they got older. How you perceive and feel things also affects how you deal with stress effectively.

The behaviour of coping with stress is called stress coping, but people who do not suffer from stress can say that “coping is working well.

In addition, in the case of nurses, by conducting self-learning and technical training on a daily basis, they will be able to assist patient care and medical care with confidence, which will lead to the reduction of stress associated with work. It may be effective to devise communication to reduce stress in interpersonal relationships.

Good sleep and a well-balanced diet are important for increasing your resistance to stress. In addition, in order to avoid physical symptoms caused by stress. There are trainings such as autogenic training to consciously control the physiological response to stress. It is also necessary to have hobbies and things that make life worthwhile so that stress can be released on a daily basis.

  • Ways to deal with stress.

  • Consultation with others

Instead of holding it alone, talk to your family, colleagues, and friends about your anxiety, worries, and stress. Even if you are not an expert, you can organize your feelings and relieve stress just by talking to someone. Even if you don’t receive any advice, just asking “Yeah, yeah” will make you feel much better. Also, by speaking, you may be able to organize your mind and find out the direction of the solution yourself.

Some workplaces have a consultation desk, so check the consultation desk at your workplace. Public institutions also have a free consultation desk where you can get advice from experts, so please use it. If you continue to have physical or mental abnormalities, you will need to consult a medical professional.

“Three R’s” for stress coping

Stress builds up even when you don’t notice it. It is difficult to recover after the mind and body are exhausted. Incorporating the “3 R’s” on a daily basis, taking appropriate breaks and dealing with them early will help prevent stress-induced illnesses.

  1. Rest: Rest, rest, sleep.

It is important to switch it on and off and get a good rest. It is also effective to take a short break consciously before fatigue accumulates, such as standing up and walking or drinking coffee even during work.

     2. Recreation: Hobbies/entertainment and distractions such as exercise, travel, and gardening.

It’s important to have a hobby to relieve stress. Take recreational time, even an hour a week, and try to distract yourself from the stress of everyday life by devoting yourself to what you like.

     3. Relaxation: Relaxation such as stretching, meditation and music, aromatherapy.

Incorporate relaxation methods that stabilize your mind, such as calming your breathing and relieving muscle tension. It is also important to have time to relieve tension, such as gathering with family and close friends.

Healthy lifestyle

Lifestyles are also said to affect the onset of depression and depression. Professor Breslow of the University of California, USA, proposed the following “seven health habits” based on the results of investigating. The relationship between lifestyle and physical health (disease, symptoms, etc.). A healthy lifestyle is the basis of self-care.

  • Get 7-8 hours of sleep
  • Be sure to eat breakfast
  • I don’t eat many snacks
  • Keep normal weight
  • Exercise moderately
  • Do not smoke
  • Try to drink properly
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