What’s your stress?
Everyone has stress, because life isn’t something we totally control. The question is: Are you managing your stress, or has it mastered you?
Stress can get to all of us and bring us down. It can be anything and it can just make us lose our rag and take it out on the people we most love. That feeling of being misunderstood and no one getting you.
What Are the Warning Signs of Stress? When going through a tough time in your life it is very easy to neglect ourselves. The effects can be very long lasting even after the problems have disappeared. We live only once and if we were to meet our future self in ten years what advice would we give to our now self. Living in a stressful world can do all sorts of crazy things to the mind. On top of that, cocktailed with food, alcohol, drugs, tobacco, gambling, overspending, or other things that don’t solve the problem, you’re going to end up with even bigger issues.
Chronic, ongoing stress can wear down the body’s natural defenses, leading to symptoms such as:
• Dizziness or a general feeling of “being out of it”
• General aches and pains
• Indigestion or acid reflux symptoms
• Increase in, or loss of, appetite
• Muscle tension in neck, face, or shoulders
• Problems sleeping
• Racing heart
• Cold and sweaty palms
• Tiredness, exhaustion
• Trembling or shaking
• Weight gain or loss
• Upset stomach.
• Sexual problems
When we’re stressed, hormones like cortisol flood our systems, producing the “fight or flight response” in which our heart rate goes up, we breathe more heavily (requiring more oxygen) and our blood vessels constrict
We have a much greater understanding of human behaviour now than we did ever before. Yet even with this greater understanding of the human mind, why we do what we do can sometimes seem like a mystery. People are often left with unsettling questions about their own (or others’) behaviour.
Our culture, genes, religion, upbringing, education, gender, sexuality, beliefs, and life experiences make us who we are. We all have bad days, be kind to yourself. Encourage rather than criticise yourself and treat yourself the way you would treat a friend in the same situation. With knowledge of how the brain translates sensory signals into emotions, it helps increase your understanding of your own—and others’—behaviour.
See the bigger picture – We all give different meanings to situations and see things from our point of view. Broaden out your perspective and consider the bigger picture (‘the helicopter view’)
• What meaning am I giving this?
• Is this fact or opinion?
• How would others see it?
• Is there another way of looking at this?
• How important is it, or will it be like in the morning?
• What can I do right now that will help most?
Accepting: ‘It is as it is’
• We tend to fight against distressing thoughts and feelings, but we can learn to just notice them and give up that struggle.
• Some situations we just can’t change so we can learn to surf those waves rather than try to stop them.
• Allow those thoughts and sensations just to be – they will pass.
• Trust your gut feeling, if you are spiritual a really special way of looking at it is that is God talking to you.
Once you learn about your personal psychological and neurological makeup, you will begin to see new possibilities for optimism, motivation, and well-being. This means making a choice. On the one hand, you can be a victim and blame your brain function, genetics, or the environment; persist in denial; and avoid any insight. Or you can take action.
The good news? Just as we have a stress response, we also have a “relaxation response,” during which your breathing slows, your blood pressure decreases and you even use less oxygen, reports the NIH’s National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine.
1. Ask yourself what you can do about the sources of your stress. Think through the pros and cons. Take action where you can.
2. Make peace with your past so it won’t screw up your present.
3. Don’t compare your life to others, you have no idea what their journey is about.
4. Frame every so called disaster with the these words “In 5 years’ time will this even matter”
5. Keep a positive, realistic attitude and view life as a gift. Accept that although you can’t control certain things, you’re in charge of how you respond. Don’t worry about what people think of you, it is none of your business!!
6. Stand up for yourself in a polite way. Share your feelings, opinions, or beliefs, instead of becoming angry, defensive, or passive.
7. Learn and practice relaxation techniques. Try meditation, prayer, yoga, or tai chi. Breathe- A real deeeeep breath “life force” — plays an important role in nourishing the body. And medical researchers agree. “Breathing exercises can help you relax, because they make your body feel like it does when you are already relaxed,” It can help reduce tension and relieve stress, thanks to an extra boost of oxygen. While shallow breathing does the opposite.
8. Exercise regularly, go for a 10 minute walk- You’ll feel better and be more prepared to handle problems. While just about any walk will help to clear your head and boost endorphins (which, in turn, reduces stress hormones), consider walking in a park or other green space, which can actually put your body into a state of meditation, thanks to a phenomenon known as “involuntary attention” during which something holds our attention, but simultaneously allows for reflection.
9. Eat healthy. Stress-eating doesn’t have to be bad. Pick a snack that will fill you up — say, half an avocado, a handful of nuts or a hardboiled egg — Avoid too much sugar. Focus on fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean protein. When you’re stressed, you’ll probably want less-nutritious comfort foods, but if you overdo them, they’ll add to your problems.
10. Try to manage your time wisely.
11. Say NO, where you can, to things that would add more stress to your life.
12. Make time for hobbies and interests.
13. Get enough rest and sleep. Your body needs time to recover from stressful events.
14. Don’t rely on alcohol, drugs, or food to help against stress. Ease up on caffeine, too. Green tea is awesome it has so many benefits.
15. Spend time with people you love, live life to the max.
16. Talk with a counsellor or take a stress management class for more help.
“Wishing you a stress-free, peaceful and happy life”
Fykaa Caan Lifestyle Editor Hollywood:London Magazine.