Stress can be a good thing, if it is mild and simply serves to motivate and jump start your body. It can become a problem, though, when you begin to feel like your family and work obligations are less like normal activities and more like a frantic juggling act. We’ve all been there, its when these pressures become the norm, rather than the exception, that you feel that tightening in the pit of your stomach. When your daily activities are consistently hectic and all your time is scheduled down to the hour and minute, with unreasonably urgent deadlines, something has to change.
The body’s reaction to stress can be broken down into three different processes: Initially, the reaction is fight or flight, where a threat is supposed or expected. This quickly startled stage causes an automatic assumption of jeopardy. Next, if the perceived danger is not resolved, the following response predicted is called the resistance level, where your body discharges hormones that are meant to prepare you for a more prolonged readiness to take action. Soon the final stage of exhaustion completes the body’s coping cycle. During this final period, the body regroups and refreshes itself. If there is never a break in this series of reactions and your body never gets the opportunity to replenish itself and take the necessary rest, this series of stressful reactions can often develop into overwhelming feelings of anxiety.
Some level of stress is a natural part of life for everyone. Overdue bills, workdays that spill over into nights and weekends, or strained relationships, all contribute to a crazy lifestyle and too high a level of sustained stress. This can easily become a problem. For example, adrenaline is initially secreted by your body to help you quickly cope with a real or imagined threat. If that hormone is excreted too frequently, or in excess, without enough rest, adrenaline can also cause harm to your exhausted body in the form of physical illness. Too much adrenaline can weaken your heart.
There are a myriad of common maladies, as well as dire diseases, that have been directly attributed to a stressful lifestyle. Vasopressin and cortisol, other hormones released by your body during the resistance stage, are known to raise both blood sugar and blood pressure. Additionally, the body’s continued state of fight or flight will eventually disrupt your sleep cycle, which only serves to further contribute to your state of exhaustion. Certain debilitating headaches, bowel irregularities and a decreased immune system are also associated with exhaustion.
It is important to identify an unduly stressful lifestyle so that anxiety is not permitted to take a firm control over your health and emotions. If you remain aware of the pace of your life and deliberately take time for planned relaxation and recreation, that will go a long way toward keeping your equilibrium. Deliberate optimism and a positive approach to challenges can also contribute to a well rounded outlook. A sense of humor and the ability to laugh, even at yourself, can always help keep troubling anxiety at bay. You can’t really laugh and worry at the same time.
Maintain a balanced, healthy lifestyle. If you have financial difficulties, approach your problem incrementally, come up with a well thought out plan of action and begin to resolve the situation. If you need outside help, by all means seek it out. Worry is counterproductive and leads to feelings of helplessness. Affirmative action can give you the sense of calm that your overall wellbeing demands. You want your body producing endorphins to help you relax and cope with one thing at a time.
If your children, marriage or significant relationship needs attention, resolve to spend more time with those you love, making the time spent with them a main priority. Everyone seems busy as a natural consequence of our culture. Keep track of what gains your efforts, determining to devote time only to those things you consciously choose.
If you have thought through what the source of your anxiety is and made an actionable plan toward defusing it, you may need to exert patience. Untangling a knotted head of hair takes slow, deliberate effort. If you have to smooth things out with your kids, wife, employer, or even your debtor, there is usually a way to succeed. Patient and persistent effort toward a foreseeable goal will calm your body, mind and spirit. Stressful drowning in a sea of unresolved worry will become a thing of the past for you.
(Reference – Allaboutlifechanges.org)