Do you sometimes feel like you are letting your life slide you by, and are constantly worrying about maintaining a balance between work and family? Do you ever feel like you are trying to juggle a million tasks and responsibilities at the same time? If so, you could be suffering from the physical and emotional symptoms of stress.
Stress is a common occurrence in everyday life, but this doesn’t mean we have to be a prisoner to it. Stressors can have negative effects on your mind and body, so it’s essential to find a way to reduce or overcome it. This can be achieved by organizing your life in such a manner that you are able to devote some time to relaxing every day.
When you work full time and have kids, or if you are simply a busy person in general, the idea of designating time in the day to simply allow yourself to unwind may seem like a waste of time. However, when you consider what stress actually does to your body, you will soon realize that finding a solution to alleviate stress is absolutely necessary:
Things Stress Does To Your Body
Stress can create both short and long term problems in your life. Your mental attitude has a substantial impact on your physical health, so when you are overwhelmed by stress there are both mental and physical repercussions. Here are some things stress does to your body:
- Increases your blood pressure, thereby making your cardiovascular system more vulnerable to disease.
- Stress can cause headaches, simply from running thoughts through your head all day. This exhausts your brain and sends it into overdrive, creating pressure points.
- When you are stressed, you overthink. Overthinking can severely diminish your quality of life. This includes an interrupted sleeping pattern, irritability and frustration, and can even lead to anxiety and depression. Mental illness in general is often triggered by stress, because it causes your brain to overload. This can lead to your brain short-circuiting, which results in incorrect or unhealthy thinking or behavioral patterns.
Ways of Alleviating Stress
Now that you are more aware of what stress does to your body, how do you go about reducing the amount of stressors you have in your life? This is a great question, because it can be easy to say you need to reduce stress, but sometimes the things that cause stress in your life are completely outside your control. If your job stresses you out, you can apply for a new job elsewhere. However, bills still need to be paid, so what do you do in the interim? Moreover, some stressful circumstances are not so easy to change. If you have a family member with a terminal illness, or a child who requires extra care, you cannot simply decide to stop stressing about it.
Thankfully, even if your stressful circumstances are impossible to change, there are still a number of easy and useful ways you can manage and reduce the power stress has over your everyday life:
The benefits of yoga include helping to alleviate stress by focusing your mind and enhancing your mood. When your life is busy and stressful, it’s important to take time out to relax. Yoga is an interesting form of exercise because while it can involve complex positions it is incredibly therapeutic. Practising yoga will ensure that your body is in top condition while also keeping you mentally strong and healthy.
Meditation is another way of alleviating stress. There are various meditative techniques that can ensure you have control over your mind, and your life. The great thing about meditation is that it does not have to take up a large part of your day and can be practised pretty much anywhere. You can practise meditation for as little as ten minutes a day, and sit in a comfortable chair or lie down on your bed to do it. It does not require any professional classes or expensive equipment, so if you’re serious about managing stress in your life but lack resources it can still be done with ease.
The benefits of meditation include stress management, improved concentration and memory, and reduced anxiety. Stress and anxiety go hand in hand, and usually appear together, so meditation allows you to address both emotional issues at once.
Meditation involves focusing on a single thing like a word or a form of breathing. All you have to do is find a comfortable position and close your eyes in order to shut out visual distractions. Next, you choose to focus all of your attention on a word like ‘love’ or ‘peace’ and then recite this word ten minutes. Doing so allows you to get rid of all the stressful clutter your mind has collected during the day. The more you do it, the more you will enjoy its effects.
Massage also helps to reduce and manage stress because it improves your circulation and boosts your immune system. It also increases your brainpower by stimulating the network of brain cells, particularly if you focus your massage in the head area.