2020 really dealt us all a wallop, and 2021 is starting out rocky as well. With the weight of the health and well-being of our families, ourselves, and our world bearing down on us all, it’s understandable that stress, anxiety, and depression can impact anyone’s life.
Even before COVID-19, 1 in 10 Americans experienced depression and that number is even higher for heart attack patients. The winter months also don’t help. This is all completely normal, but there’s also a lot we can all do to address our mental health and positively impact our physical health.
Anxiety and stress raise cortisol and glucose levels, both of which impact your risks of heart disease, diabetes, and stroke, so it’s important to do what you can to reduce stress and anxiety in your life. The AHA has a helpful list of ideas here that you can use to help address your anxiety, stress, or depression. As advocates, we’re natural givers and caretakers, which is what makes us so great at advocacy, but it also can make us more aware of the difficulties of the world. It’s normal to not feel “normal”, but there’s many tools you can use to help push yourself along and maybe have a little stress and anxiety in your life.