Here is the last piece of the puzzle. One thing I am trying to realize is that I am the one imposing stress on myself. That means I can reduce the stress if I can just realize it. Here are some of the ways I have been trying to reduce stress in my life. I'll bet you have more ideas ...
Exercise -- I really do feel less stressed when I get regular exercise. It does not need to be violent to make me feel better (good thing with my joints! Nowadays, I go to a water walking class twice a week. It has gotten to be a wonderful, supportive group that I really enjoy. I have an exercise bicycle at home, but the seat needs to be replaced. And unless my schedule absolutely interferes, each day, I get out to walk with the dog and my husband and on weekends, my daughter, at a nearby park.
Yoga -- I do beginner's yoga once a week. This is another group that is great to be with. And I can do some of this at home through the week. I am amazed at the difference it makes to my mood and outlook. No full lotus here, but, boy, I feel better!
Meditation and Prayer -- I try to set aside some quiet time every day.
Control the Schedule -- I try not to sign up for too much, and try to stay organized. That was a very hard lesson as my health went down the tubes. Saying no was a hard thing to learn to do. I am still not good at protecting myself, and very bad at asking for help if I need it. Hard to change a lifetime's habits. Hard on the pride and self-image. Important to help with stress. And very hard if you are a student, where you have less control over assignments. But you can control how much you try to do outside of class.
Good luck! Share your ideas...
The image is a photo by Keith Laban from www.meditationandpsychotherapy.org