How Is STRESS Impacting You?
You may hear the phrase "stress management" pop up quite often, but what does that mean?
Everyone, in some shape or form, is 'stressed.'
It is the body's reaction to feeling threatened or under pressure.
Fear, anxiousness, overwhelm, confusion... even exercise itself is stress on your muscles and joints.
Therefore, it can both serve us in a positive way, or hinder us in a negative way.
I'm sure you have heard of the "fight or flight" response?
For example, somebody physically tries to attack you.
Automatically your body will either try to fight/defend yourself, or run away.
Your heart rate elevates, adrenaline is pumping through your whole body, you brace your muscles, and your senses and focus are heightened.
That is an extreme example, but your body will respond in a similar to lesser experiences and emotions from day to day.
Now imagine if that response is consistently elevated...
Stressed about relationships, work, money, health, body image, diet, exercise etc.
What do you think could be the side effects?
High blood pressure and increased risk of health problems.
Struggle with your mental health and low self-esteem.
Increased body fat storage. It is a low priority for your body to use its energy reserves, which is essentially what fat is.
Poor quality and duration of sleep.
Skin, hair and hygiene problems.
… the list goes on.
Stress is often overlooked, underestimated and can be accepted as part of who you are and what you do in life - some may even use it as a badge of honour.
Learning to manage your own stressors is essential to not only taking back control of your life, but helping to prolong it.
Self awareness is a very important skill we must all constantly work on.
First, identify what our stressors are (and if you can’t, talk to a professional).
And then be able to begin to manage and best control them:
Saying “NO” more often.
Being aware of how you perceive things, people, situations and experiences and seeking what the truth is, not your biased view.
Doing more of what you enjoy or what relaxes you.
… just a few examples of how you can get started, depending on the stress you’re experiencing.
Ask yourself, how long do you realistically think you can maintain high levels of stress before something has to give?
Just know that you can make progress and improve your situation, fears and health, no matter what it is - but you must be aware, learn to manage and take control of it.