STRESS, What Can We Really Do About It?  

Is Self-Care the Only Way to Go?

Many people suffer from the repercussions of stress.  As health coaches, we help them to deal with it by sharing extreme self-care techniques.

Some of you know that I’ve struggled with migraines that have increased in frequency and severity over the last couple years.  I’ve seen a lot of doctors in the last eight years.  They diagnosed me incorrectly several times, including mini-stroke, aneurysm, sinus headaches, even considering detached retina. It’s all come down to one thing – stress.  When I was younger, I thrived on stress – the more stress, the better.  I learned to tackle stressful situations in the right way so that I became a pretty good problem solver.  As I’ve gotten older, I think my body is starting to rebel.

My GP asked me if I could eliminate any of my stress.  Well, I hadn’t thought about it.  We’re so used to prescribing prayer, meditation, massage, facials – any self-care that helps to eliminate stress.  Of course, I told him no.  You don’t reduce family and business stress is business stress – it’s the cost of doing business, right?

Then, my neurologist asked the same question.  He also suggested neuro-therapy.  I went to see the neuro-therapist.  Insurance doesn’t cover it, and it would be around $6000 to start.  I considered it, but, when I spoke with her, I couldn’t help but wonder, if they alter one part of your brain’s perception/reception, what happens to other regions?  It also sounds a little like brainwashing.  I decided to save my money and my time and skip the neuro-therapy.

It made sense to focus more and more on what it is that creates stress for me and consider eliminating the cause.

Cathy Sykora

Cathy Sykora

Founder, The Health Coach Group

Cathy helps health coaches build and maintain successful businesses that improve the lives of others.


The first step was to make a list.  What was causing me stress?  I love what I do.  So it should be stress-free right?  Not necessarily.

In business, the most stress I encounter is when I know something or someone isn’t working out, and I try to force it to work.  That’s my fault.  I’m working on facing my limitations. In 2016 there were four different things that I just let go too long.  Not everything works right all the time. You just must be able to cut and change direction.  So over two years I tried and tried to make the situations better.  When it finally hit home, the changes were made, and the headaches reduced 80% almost immediately.  The offerings that were causing stress and not profitable were cut.  I hired back a team member who took on a lot of responsibility that I could release.  It wasn’t about money; it was about values, trust, and quality of work.  In some ways, I made work for myself, and it cost more money, but it reduced the stress of needing to be on constant guard.

There is some stress, like family issues that you just need to learn to either change your way of thinking or give it to God.  You can change your team members and vendors, as well as acquaintances, especially when it benefits you, your team and your clients. Normally our family is there, and you love them no matter what. The serenity prayer was made for the family.

God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change. Courage to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference.

In business, it’s not practical.  You need to have responsible people, products and procedures that are non-threatening and contribute to the product, share your values, and don’t take away from the bottom line of the company.

The Next Step

Eliminating the stressors was incredibly successful.  The next thing was to find ways (that didn’t cost me $6000) to eliminate or deal with my stress that remained. So I established some new changes and rules.


  1. Made a rule that I would take a step back from requests and give myself time for research, references, and discernment.
  2. Follow my gut.  I’m pretty intuitive, and almost anything that is a problem is something that I had a bad feeling about to start with.
  3. Be direct and honest with kindness and immediately. Don’t put off anything thinking you can outlast or change someone.
  4. Compromise to keep the peace.
  5. Talk to anyone who enjoys debating too much.
  6. Hire anyone who doesn’t have similar values and ‘s hard to talk to.
  7. Accept anything less than I’d expect from myself.
  8. Check my email three times a day.
  9. Check Facebook 3 times a day.
  10. Not participate in any meetings or events that require hours of idle chit chat.
  11. Found a computer person to make my computers, printers, and other hardware to make work easier.  Got on a monthly maintenance plan.
  12. Hired a local business to help with Web Development.
  13. Hired Shianne back.
  14. Move my bookcases out of my office to make more elbow room and space for another white board.




  1. Joined a women only gym and will work out daily – starting to work a little later in the morning.
  2. Cleaned my pantry.  Got rid of all the powdered mushrooms and special ingredients I was using to boost my nutrition before THCG got so busy.  There were about 40 jars that were sent out to the garage.
  3. Set a monthly appointment for a facial.
  4. Set a biweekly appointment for a massage.
  5. Got my rebounder out to a spot that I would use it daily.
  6. Put the vitality swing next to my bed so I’d use it daily.
  7. Got back on my biweekly wheatgrass subscription again.
  8. Gave my husband a pass on fixing my lunches.  He’s going to still buy groceries and I’m going to take an hour for lunch and make my own lunch.
  9. Journal daily.  (clarity and focus)
  10. Cleaned my closet and got rid of all the clothes I won’t wear this season.
  11. Reinforced the rule about news stations being on first thing in the morning and last thing at night.
  12. Unfollowed or unfriended people on facebook who post mean or terribly irritating things.
  13. Use diffusers daily.
  14. Quit meat again.
  15. Take my supplements without fail.
  16. Maintain daily prayer and reflection.
  17. Read books that boost introspection.
Here’s the thing, we sometimes forget about eliminating the cause of stress and focus only on how to live with it.

Sometimes it’s extremely stressful to remove stressors, but in the long run, you’re much better off.


Know when something isn’t working anymore and don’t be afraid to let it go if you can’t change it.


Are you experiencing stress?

Is there a physical repercussion for your stress?

What can you eliminate that causes you stress?

What can you do to relieve the symptoms of stress?

Share below.