Stress- The “Silent” Killer

Do you ever feel overwhelmed?
Do you sometimes feel like you can’t take a nice, full, deep breath?
Do you have trouble “turning off” your mind?
Do you ever feel like your shoulders are attached to your ears?
Do you feel like you are “stuck” in areas of your life?
Do you find yourself easily irritated? Snappy?
Do you put others needs ahead of yours?
If your life was a car, does your health sit in the backseat?

What’s the reason for these feelings? Stress.

stress Stress is a terrible word, and a horrible feeling isn’t it? The thing is stress isn’t all bad. Well, it shouldn’t be. Without stress, we wouldn’t be motivated to protect ourselves or work towards achieving our dreams. A certain level of stress helps us adapt to our environment, pushes us to excel and reach the next level. The stress that is worrisome, provokes fear or feelings of failure and lack of hope is chronic stress, and it can kill you. Now, I’m not trying to provoke fear, but, stress that is worrisome is chronic stress, and chronic stress negatively affects the body in multiple ways.

The Stress Response
So, what is “good” stress also called eu-stress. Stress is a response, a response to a “threat” triggering a fight or fleeing action. Whether it is a physical threat, an intense sporting event/game, or riding a roller coaster, our body goes into “metabolic overdrive.” Adrenaline and cortisol flood the body. Blood pressure, breathing and heart rate increases. Glucose is released into the bloodstream for energy. Digestion, growth, reproduction, and immune system functions are suppressed or put on hold. Blood flow to the skin is decreased and pain tolerance is increased.

During a crisis, your actions would end up reversing many of these processes. You would fight or flee to resolve the problem, then, your body would work to come to a more resting state and restore your metabolic and hormonal balances. This is “good” stress.

However, with how our lives are today, we often aren’t able to enact a full stress response and resolution. Instead, we operate as if we are in a constant low-grade state of emergency with no end (rest) in sight. Many of us don’t physically dispel stress hormones or take the time to resolve the problem at its root, we just keep trucking. We don’t soothe ourselves or question priorities. Instead, we just keep pushing through and burying the problem, because we often have the attitude of “I’ll do it later.”

stressed personWhen we operate daily in a constant low-grade state of emergency, that is bad stress. Bad stress leads to chronic stress, and chronic stress is deadly.

How do you manage stress?
What good stress do you have in your life?

Until Then-
Walk in excellence, conviction and comfort with a total spirit of love!

Dr. Erica

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