Thoughts and behaviors for managing Tax Day stress

Thoughts and behaviors for managing Tax Day stress


As a recent national survey from the American Psychological Association indicated, a great number of us are under significant stress, and not dealing well with it. With tax day stress looming here are some strategies for taking the edge off.

Using Coping Thoughts

Just like we can swap out an uncomfortable pair of jeans for a comfortable pair, we can swap out a painful thought (that is usually untrue), that is serving no good purpose, for one that is more adaptive (that is usually true).

Here are some to try. You should only use those that you believe to be true:

• Quoting Harvard psychologist Daniel Gilbert in the movie Happiness: “The difference in happiness between a person making $5,000 and $50,000 is dramatic. However, the difference in happiness between a person making $50,000 and $50,000,000 is not dramatic.”

• “I work my butt off. That’s all anyone can do at the end of the day.”

• “I can control taxes about as much as I can control …[Read More]

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8 tips to bury your winter blahs

8 tips to bury your winter blahs


I admit it–I am so done with winter.  This is one thing that pretty much everyone (other than the most avid of winter sports enthusiasts) on the east coast and midwest can agree on, we are all ready for spring.

Winter blahs are not the same as Seasonal Affective Disorder. Most of us are not clinically depressed. We don’t need medication. We don’t need therapy.

We need some sunshine and warm temperatures.

Most parents need to know their kids will be going to school during the week and not starting two hours late. Snow days are not going over well with many of the families I see in my practice. The kids are home, but the parents still have to get to work. This really complicates mornings.

So, what can we do until the season finally ends?

Here are a few ideas to get us through the next few weeks…even with more snow predicted.

Take advantage of sunshine when it shows its beautiful face. Sit by the window, get …[Read More]

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9 steps for de-stressing a stressed-out teen #stressAPA

9 steps for de-stressing a stressed-out teen #stressAPA



This week the American Psychological Association released the results of its annual Stress in America survey, a national survey regarding stress in the United States. This year’s report places a key focus on the stress experience of teens. I invite you to read the full report, but I will note a few summary points here.

Teen stress levels higher than they consider healthy

Teens estimate that a healthy level of stress is a 3.9 on a 10-point scale. However, they report that their stress averages a 5.8 during the school year and a 4.6 during the summer months, with just about one in three indicating that their stress has increased in the past year. Teens report that their top sources of stress are school (83 percent), concerns about life after high school (69 percent) and worries about their family having enough money (65 percent).

While more than half of teens indicate that managing stress is important, only 41 percent believe they are doing a …[Read More]

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Stress in America: A preview of this year’s survey #stressAPA

Stress in America: A preview of this year’s survey #stressAPA


Tomorrow the American Psychological Association releases the results of its annual Stress in America survey. Since 2006, we’ve been surveying American adults, and sometimes children, about what is causing their stress, how they manage it, and what affect it has on their health.

This year, we also surveyed teenagers. There has been a lot of talk lately about teens and health. This new survey continues that conversation.

Look for our survey report tomorrow, as well as new tip sheets related to the survey findings.

Related to the survey, is a new animated video we’re releasing on stress and how psychologists and primary care providers can work together to help people better tame their stressors. Here’s a Vine preview. The full video will be on our YouTube page.


Join us for this important conversation! Follow us at @APAHelpCenter, ask your questions and make comments tagging your messages with #stressAPA.

And on Thursday, Feb. 13, at 8 p.m. EST, hop onto Facebook and take …[Read More]

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