Are you a paramedic, fire fighter, law enforcement officer or dispatcher? Is your job creating stress and anxiety at home and at work? If you are, then this is for you.

Spending many years as an EMT and paramedic, and working in a 9-1-1 center, I am very much aware of the stress that can accumulate working in emergency services. The causes of stress in emergency services are too many to list, but include: long 10 to 24 hour shifts causing fatigue; angry, emotional and violent victims, patients and bystanders; catastrophic/mass casualty situations; radio communications; poor eating habits; excessive noise; and, the physical demands of the job.

Stress can cause some very common health-related problems including fatigue, insomnia, high blood pressure, cancer, stroke, heart attacks and other illnesses. Unless you take control and learn how to manage the stress, it may lead to chronic illness, drug and alcohol abuse, and sudden death if not managed properly. These are the very things that consume your day in emergency services.

The 6 Steps of Stress RELIEF can help you gain control of what is causing you stress and help you lead a more peaceful life. Continue reading to discover the first 4 strategies.

Yes, I know. It’s easier said than done. With a few quick strategies to do during the day, you will start feeling more relaxed.

Start by writing down what is causing you stress; then, write down possible solutions. Sometimes writing down the issues can help inspire solutions.

Keep a gratitude journal. Daily gratitude helps keep you focused on what is good in your life: your family, your friends, your home and helping others, etc. When you focus on the positive things, more come your way.

The food that we eat has a profound affect on our attitude and wellbeing. Eating natural, whole foods will help you feel better, have more energy and reduce the stress that accompanies poor eating habits.

Of course it is a well known fact that exercise is good for you. It helps reduce the stress hormones in your body that cause health problems. Being in emergency services requires that you are physically fit; however, mental fitness is also important to reducing stress.

In emergency services, every day includes reading, puzzles and brain teasers. However, taking part in activities of which you can do for fun in your leisure time, including a hobby, a project at home or playing a game, are great mental fitness exercises you can do.

Enjoy every moment with your family and friends. Every day you go to work, you are reminded of how life is precious and too short. You just never know what can happen next. For this reason, it is important to enjoy your life, love the people around you and have fun when you are with them.

Inner peace can be found through meditation, faith and spirituality. This is a more personal area of which you need to determine what will work best for you. It may involve prayer, going to church or having a few moments alone to meditate or read.

To begin your stress relief journey, continue reading Part 2 of this article, then make a list of strategies you are going to implement and put them into action. By doing so, you are inviting gratitude, balance and tranquility into your life.

Author's Bio: 

Kay Fontana is a lifelong learner, natural explorer, and navigator of Life. After watching family and friends struggle with chronic health issues, such as diabetes, Alzheimer's, heart disease, asthma, Crohn’s disease, arthritis, and cancer, seeing the effects of the standard American diet (SAD), experiencing a series of devastating losses, and working through her own health issues with diabetes and asthma, Kay became very clear about her life's purpose. Kay’s focus is on the whole being and connecting heart, mind, body, and soul for an abundant life. On her journey, she has learned from leading experts in the field of health, nutrition, healing, and spirituality in order to help clients achieve optimal wellness.

As a certified holistic life and wellness coach, a licensed spiritual practitioner, and a Grief Recovery Specialist®, Kay’s purpose is to help individuals with chronic or life-limiting illness by providing heart-centered coaching, spiritual guidance and support, tools, and resources, such as alternative medicine, that connect heart, mind, body, and soul for an abundant life. Kay’s mission is to inspire individuals with chronic or life-limiting illness and their family caregivers to let go of limiting beliefs and habits that block energy, and replace them with mindful self-compassion practices that lead to optimal wellness and a better life. For more information, go to