Are you aware of how easily life’s challenges can have a negative effect on your entire well-being? You’ve surely had an experience or two where rough times have come upon you, and at the end of the road you feel like you’ve conquered the situation.
However, even though you were successful at handling the situation, there may be some very real side-effects which you overlook as “things that happen” in life.
Some of those very things may be signs of stress which, if left unattended, can lead to further challenges down the road.
Ask yourself if the following behaviors or states of mind have been prevalent at any stage of your life. If you’re able to identify with them, chances are that unrecognized stress is manifesting and it’s important to eliminate it right away.
Stress reduction methods like exercise and meditation can bring immense relief and restore your well-being.
How to Identify Physical and Mental Signs of Stress
Ill health isn’t always about feeling aches and pains. The domino effect of stress can result in serious health challenges. For your own benefit, it’s important to pay attention to yourself and ensure you do whatever’s necessary to reduce your stress.
Often times stress will manifest when we carry over yesterday’s concerns into our present day concerns. An accumulation will almost always end up in a high stress level. Therefore, we must be able to “dump” all of our concerns from the previous day or days and concentrate wholly on our today.
So here are 3 stress busting tips
- Stress Busting Tip #1
Resolve right now to release every thought from yesterday and be only mindful of the now…. this thought only...this breath...this moment. Take in three very deep breaths and slowly release each one.
At the same time feel each and every concern, each and every problem, and each and every unresolved moment, begin to dissolve. You can deal with them at a later time. For now, you are only to be in this very moment.
Now go to your inner quiet place. Go deep inside to a place where you feel that you are at peace and then just relax and breathe in deeply and enjoy the feeling of being at one and at peace within yourself.
Use this special time and place to be calm. Free your mind and body of all worry, all regret, all disappointment, all anger and grief.
- Stress Busting Tip #2
Next, think of one particular act, such as rocking your baby, taking a quick stroll, raking the leaves, and do that one simple thing. All the while, your mind is quiet and calm and you are in your own special place within.
Practice this act of quiet and calm each day and you will see that you will accomplish so much more. At the first sign of being stressed, go back to this mindful, quiet place and start all over again until you have reached your inner place of calm.
- Stress Busting Tip #3
The very best thing that you can do for yourself is to eat, drink and rest – to your health!
Stress is easily brought on by not eating and drinking properly. When you don’t get the number of hours of sleep that you need each night, you are only setting yourself up for additional stress.
Limit the amount of salt, sugar, caffeine and alcohol in your diet. Drink plenty of clean, pure water each day and do at least moderate exercise each day. This will breathe new life into your skin, hair and will nourish all of your vital organs.
Take time to breathe properly! Take deep belly breathes to send pure oxygen to all of your body. Laugh and then laugh some more. It is food for the soul! Spend time doing the things that please you most. Engage in healthy and fulfilling relationships and work on problems that would erode the closeness that you have with someone special.
When we are content and living a balanced life everyday stresses seem to pale in comparison. We are better equipped to deal with the unexpected.
You can take control today! Isolate only one particular stressor in your life and then work on it until you regain control. At the very least, have some new hope!
More and more studies are showing us how chronically increased stress levels cause us to suffer physical, emotionally and spiritually. Stress can really kill! Stress is a major factor in heart disease including heart failure, sudden cardiac death, and heart enlargement.
Stroke, chronic fatigue, adrenal exhaustion, depression and anxiety, are all intimately connected to the psychological and emotional effects of chronic stress. Up to 90% of all initial visits to a family physician are due to underlying stress.
If we don’t learn how to manage our stress, it will definitely manage us, and be behind all manner of health problems. You probably are familiar with the fear, flight fight response the body uses to deal with emergency situations.
This is the acute stress response and is perfectly healthy in life or death situations. It works like this: Your pituitary gland produces and discharges adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) into your bloodstream.
This then causes the release of two more hormones, epinephrine, and norepinephrine, a.k.a. adrenaline and noradrenaline, respectively. These come from the adrenal glands and also get released into the bloodstream. Their role is to prepare the body for emergency action. This means an increase in blood pressure, heart rate, blood sugars, and muscle tension, which occurs to help supply enough blood to your brain and musculoskeletal system.
This is fine as long as the stress is a true emergency. However, when the stress response remains active over the long-term, due to perceived threat, then serious health consequences ensue, and these can literally be deadly. It is our responses to work, finances, and relationships, which underlie the problem of ongoing stress.
There are many different ways we choose to cope with stress. Unfortunately, a lot of these can be deemed unhealthy coping mechanisms and serve only to exacerbate the situation further. If we allow stress to cause us to react negatively, to worry, to get angry or anxious, we only perpetuate the problem and make ourselves sicker in the long-run.
If we allow negative thinking to rule our minds, we will become more run down than ever, and the stress will continue to mount and get stored in our bodies, leading to more ill-health and problems with our well-being.
So, even though we may exercise and eat well, if we don’t address our negative responses to stress, which might include eating chips on the couch after we had a healthy green salad, or drinking too much alcohol even though we work out five times per week, then we only create more stress and end up sabotaging our best efforts.
Stress is a double edged sword, whether you realize this or not. One end, helps you cut through obstacles and makes it easier for you to move forward. However, if you’re not careful, that same double-edged sword can end up hurting you, especially if you experience stress more than the average person does.
Sadly, this is the case more often than not, when the stress hormone cortisol shows its ugly side and starts to adversely affect your health.
Regardless, stress is here to stay. It does have its utility, and can make you an efficient working individual. This is why it’s important to tell the difference between good and bad stress, and make it work for you.
Good stress is that stimulus that makes you actually do things and motivates you. Embedded into us is this primitive response that makes us get up and go, in one way or another. This is called the fight or flight response, which makes you either face adversity or get as far from it as possible.
Good stress is usually of a short duration, and of a magnitude that is just adequate to get us past a hurdle in our way. In contrast to bad stress, good stress does not have lingering effects on our brain or body, and can be considered good for our survival. Good stress is also referred to as eustress.
Good stress is usually called upon in these scenarios:
Bad stress, sometimes referred to as distress, is that unabating burden that does not improve even after the initial stimulus has passed. Typically, it develops from a prolonged exposure to the same things day after day, and impairs the body’s ability to function normally, otherwise known as chronic stress.
Maladies ranging from heart disease, mental illness, reproductive dysfunction and more can result from excessive stress, and recovery is a long road.
Scenarios that are considered triggers to a heavy stress load include:
Manage the influences that cause bad stress to show its face. Good stress is there for us when we need it, but be sure to adequately rest and recuperate to restore homeostasis to the body.
6 Tips That Make Life Easier
Life is a lot like swimming: if you have good technique, you can glide along easily and effortlessly. If you go about it the wrong way, you end up thrashing around and attract the sharks. Life can be quite easy, with the right approach.
Give these suggestions an honest try and you’ll enjoy some positive changes in your life:
If you want things in your life to change, you must do something differently than what you’re currently doing. Try these 6 suggestions – give them 30 days and see how easy and enjoyable life can be!
I focus on what I can control.
My time and energy are valuable. I direct my resources towards the things I can control. I am in charge of my feelings, thoughts, and actions. I decide how to respond to the circumstances that surround me.
I make positive changes when I can. I collaborate with others to search for solutions.
I accept situations that are beyond my reach. I wish others well even if I disagree with their behavior. I make peace with reality while still hoping for miracles. However, I move on when I believe that I would be happier and more productive elsewhere.
I decide to be happy. I count my blessings and express my gratitude. I greet each day with a smile. A cheerful attitude keeps me calm and content.
I cherish my family and friends. I reach out for support when I am struggling. Even ordinary activities become joyful and meaningful when I share them with my loved ones. After a tense day at work, I play catch with my children in our back yard.
I take care of my health. Regular exercise and a healthy diet keep me fit.
I turn to my faith for comfort and strength. Connecting with the divine sustains me during difficult times.
Today, I remember that I have power over my mind. I control my choices and actions.