It’s natural to have a certain amount of stress in our lives but it’s when that stress escalates to the point where we find ourselves living in a state of constant stress that it becomes damaging to both our mental and physical health.
Stress is a major cause of the deterioration of our health.
Stress can deteriorate your health faster than most diseases. Many people suffer physically when dealing with the day to day stresses of working, keeping house, child-minding, living in the community, family issues, health, well-being and emotional/spiritual problems that plague their lives. There’s a lot to deal with in today’s frenetic society.
- Do you have difficulty saying no to people only to wind up spreading yourself too thinly and taking on more than you can handle?
- Do you constantly feel overwhelmed with all the things going on in your life that it stops you from taking important decisive action?
- Do you lack motivation and a passion for life?
- Do you often feel physically weighed down with the amount of stress you have in your life?
- Are there times where you find it difficult to switch off from problems and work related dramas that you have a tendency to bring them home?
Since stress can affect you physically, mentally and emotionally, you won’t be safe from its effects until you get your problems under control. But how can you get your problems under control without buckling under the stress?
You must learn some
stress management techniques.
Learn to read the signs of stress
In most cases, stress usually starts mentally rather than physically. Since both are linked and work in tandem, the more affected you are by your daily problems, the more negative effect you will feel on your body.
To deal with this, you need to make an extra effort to observe your body, your emotions and your temperament when you are feeling stressed. Signs such as:
- heavy or shallow breathing
- itching or skin ailments
- vertigo, cramps, hallucinations
- having trouble sleeping
- jaw pains
- back and neck and headaches
- aches and pains
- tension headaches
- hair brittle or falling out
- infrequent urination
- heartburn, acid reflux
- asthma, breathing difficulties
- loss of libido, changes in your sex drive
- pushing people away
- being self-centered
- avoiding contact
- increasing reliance on cigarettes or alcohol (or even becoming addicted to exercise!)
These are all signs that your body is reaching its limit in coping with your stress.
The secret to keep a healthy lifestyle during a time of stress is to be more sensitive to your body.
Try to be aware of possible signs that will indicate that your body is manifesting stress – it’s falling apart. The more you manage your stress, the more healthy your body will be.
There are plenty of techniques that you can use to help deal with stress and reduce the effect on your health. Breathing exercises can help regulate your oxygen intake and will help you relax. If you are having trouble sleeping, meditation can help you relax to the point of putting you to sleep.
You might need to consult your doctor. You can take sleeping pills or anti-depressant medicines to help you along – these might be a stop-gap measure to help you in the hardest times, but should only ever be a temporary crutch.
Music therapy can also help you relax if you want to get a good night sleep after a stressful day at work. Since your mind is the problem when you are having problem sleeping, you need to make sure that you focus on keeping your thoughts in line and not get the better of you.
The adage “Music can soothe the savage beast” may very well work in your favor in this case. Go for nature rhythms or instrumental ones since these have a steady flow and can relax the mind and put you too sleep.
Women tend to be more prone to eating than men when in the throes of stress. You need to keep an eye on your diet and make sure you don’t go past the limits that your body can take. Dieting is part of stress management and is routinely observed to keep your health as normal as possible.
Since eating habits tend to be erratic when you are having problems, you need to be careful in what you take in. Stay abreast of your weight and girth to determine if your eating habits are getting out of hand. Also, you need to be more conscious of what foods you take, make sure that these are healthy ones and stay away from fast foods or junk foods.
Start taking in more vegetables and salads with a healthy dose of some extra virgin olive oil instead of burgers and fries. Fruits can be prepared in plenty of ways to satisfy your cravings which is a healthy alternative to junk foods.
The secret to keep a healthy lifestyle during a time of stress is to be more sensitive to your body. Try to be aware of possible signs that will indicate that your body is falling apart. The more you manage your stress, the more healthy your body will be.
For more inspiration on setting your goals and making plans, check out the links below