It is one of those words we have all heard over and over and it seems like everything that can go wrong with us can be attributed to stress.
So what can you do to help your body and mind ?
Self help ideas:
Meditate – I can’t stress enough the importance of a regular meditation/mindfulness practice in your daily life.
exercise – Find some physical activity you enjoy and embrace it, make it part of your life
diet: make it as healthy and ‘clean’ as you can – caffeine causes the stress response in our bodies, especially when consumed on an empty stomach.
Sleep: incredibly important you try to get as good as possible – aim to be in bed by 10 pm and asleep before 11 to ensure you are matching up to your natural body clock as much as possible.
‘reframe’: try to look at your thought patterns and how you perceive things:
HUG: youd be amazed at what a decent hug can do physiologically!
Therapies for support
Until Christmas 2016 Paula is offering FREE community style acupuncture sessions to help you relax and unwind – available to both existing and new patients. BOOK NOW
Massage: human contact itself can help alleviate stress, moreover the massage will physically ease tension and relax the body.
talking therapies (not available at health rediscovered): talking to a counsellor or similar can help, especially with the ‘reframing’.
What is stress?
Stress is a physiological response: our bodies are so clever that they can divert blood flow, and change our chemistry to allow us to ‘flight or fight’. This is a wonderful system when we are in acute, imminent danger: e.g. a tiger is approaching us, but isn’t so useful for the lower grade, chronic stress we are under: our bodies don’t understand the difference between said impending tiger attack and the stress of a deadline, or being stuck in traffic, making us late for something or even from watching a dramatic TV programme.
As such, for many of us, our bodies are in a permanent state of fight or flight: which reduces our immunity, reduces the efficacy of our digestive system, impairs the quality of our sleep and can mess with our perception and mental health.
As our bodies have not yet evolved to thrive under the conditions in which we now live we need to take responsibility for managing our lives and our mental health and do what we can to minimise the effects of constant low grade stress.