Multitasking Mon-Stress-Ities

According to the American Psychological Association, female stress levels are on the rise! 49% percent of women surveyed said their stress has increased over the past five years, and surprisingly those who are married seem to experience even more stressors.

And guess what? The common denominator in heart disease, depression, anxiety, strokes, and ultimately death is stress. Yet, when it comes to this snowball effect of stress, we women are our biggest “frenemies.”

Wake up at 4 a.m. to jump on the treadmill? Make lunches before the sun is up? Make sure the kids are off to school with homework in tow? Presentation ready to impress work clients? Answer emails while standing in line at the grocery store? Carpooling a bundle of kids from soccer or gymnastics? Whipping up an organic stir-fry for dinner? Of course, no problem! But it is a problem because becoming a human smart-phone is affecting our ability to focus, be mindful, and make decisions, all while increasing stress!

In one study, University of California Irvine researchers found that those with constant access to their emails stayed in a perpetual “high alert” mode resulting in elevated heart rates. This means that they were always in “fight or flight mode” even in a more relaxed setting. Multitasking also negatively affects short-term memory, or our capacity to hold and manipulate information in the mind long enough for it to ingrain in our mind. It is the basis of all mental operations like following conversations and remembering simple numbers and addresses.

So how do you reverse this unmanageable pace? To start:

Lay off the daily social media scroll.
Unless you’re doing PR for Justin Timberlake and you’re on the clock, there is no need to scroll through media constantly, and subconsciously compare yourself to other women. Remember we’re the ones creating the monster.

Set up an automatic response on your email on weekends.
Cut yourself off from email in the evening and on at least one weekend day by setting an email alert that notifies people when you will be available.

Meditate or take a 20-minute walk in nature.
Both have been proven to reduce blood pressure naturally.

The Model of Health