Today I would like to shed some light on the mechanics of stress and by that hopefully help you get the advantage of being more aware of and sensitive to your own level of stress and knowing when and how to stay in control of it so it doesn’t take control of you. This increased awareness will also assist you to care better for your family, friends and colleagues. Here are a few facts about stress that a lot of people are unaware of:
Fact #1: Your body doesn’t care if it’s a big stress or a little one. It can’t distinguish between a BIG stress or its baby brother. Regardless of the significance, stress affects the body in entirely foreseeable ways. A typical reaction to stress, which most of us experience many times each day, begins with a torrent of 1,400 biochemical events in our body. If these reactions are left unchecked we age quicker, our cognitive function is impaired, our energy is depleted, and we lose our effectiveness and clarity.
Fact #2: Stress causes us to do stupid things. Stress causes what brain researchers call “cortical inhibition.” The phenomenon of cortical inhibition helps to explain why clever people do senseless things. In other words, stress obstructs a small part of your brain which prevents you from functioning at your best. When we are in coherence – a state where we are cognitively sharp, emotionally calm, and we feel and think with enhanced clarity – the brain, heart and nervous system are working harmoniously. This state of coherence enables our cognitive functioning – we are actually operating at peak performance mentally, emotionally and physically.
Fact #3: People can become desensitised to their stress. We can be physiologically experiencing stress yet mentally unresponsive to it because we’ve become so accustomed to it that it became our ‘base-line’ (our norm). Some have become so adjusted to the daily pressures, irritations and annoyances of life that it starts to seem normal. Ce la vie. Yet the small stresses accumulate quickly and we may not realize how much they’re harming our mental and emotional clarity and our whole health until it shows up as a bad decision, an overreaction or an unwanted diagnosis at the doctor’s office.
Fact #4: The good news is that we can control how we respond to stress. We don’t need to be victims to our own emotions, thoughts and attitudes. We can control how we respond to stress and we can become more sensitive to stressful situations and how they are affecting us before it develops as a physical, mental or emotional condition. There are simple, scientifically validated solutions to stress that empower people to rewire their own stress response.
Fact #5: The best strategy to handle stress is in the moment. The moment you feel it creeps up. Millions of individuals unsuccessfully use the binge-and-purge approach when it comes to stress. They stress out all day, believing that they can wait until later to recuperate when they go to an evening yoga class, go to the gym or chill out when they go on holiday. Unfortunately, when we postpone going for our own inner balance our body has already triggered the stress response and it’s our whole health that suffers.
HeartMath™ provides scientifically proven techniques and tools to help manage stress and improve resilience and energy. In turn, it also helps improve decision making process as well as help reduce hypertension.
Contact me if you would like more information about 1-to-1 coaching or group sessions to private and corporate groups.