If you have been feeling more than a little overwhelmed of late and if you are tired, irritable and feel out of sorts, you may well be under the negative effects of stress. The symptoms of stress can infiltrate every aspect of life leading you vulnerable to disease. So, the question is, how stressed are you?
How stressed are you?
We often joke about the extent of stress in life but, even though we are aware of it, we often don’t realize how it impacts our thoughts, feelings, actions and behaviors. It also seeps into our emotional and physical health too. When you consider your life, the daily tasks, the people you are connected to and the time you have to nurture yourself, it’s important to ask yourself how stressed are you overall? If you feel that your stress levels are rising, you have to do something to control it.
Stress symptoms are far-reaching. There’s no doubt about it. You may have a niggling headache, suffer from Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) or, not be able to sleep properly. Your neck and shoulders may be knotted with tension. You may feel tired constantly or, feel anxious and unsettled. You may feel sad, restless or lacking in motivation. As a result, you may turn to food for comfort, your temper may escalate with those closest to you or, you may use alcohol or even drugs as a way of escape. When you ask the question, how stressed are you, do you know instinctively that stress is nipping at your heels and invading every aspect of your life?
If you find yourself withdrawing from social occasions and even if you attend, you feel isolated and out of sorts, if your life feels totally out of control and you have lost interest in much that is happening around you, it’s important to recognize and accept that in the main, these are the symptoms of stress.
Stress management tips
So, if you think about your own personal situation, consider on a scale of 1-10, how stressed are you? Once you understand the extent of any stressors, you can take important steps towards changing your situation.
There are many ways to offset the negative aspects of stress but, it can be difficult to implement any of changes. This is because once you are in the midst of a stress crisis, it’s difficult to think with any clarity. Therefore, it can be beneficial to talk to someone about how you are feeling because those who are not as involved will have greater clarity and so, their perception of the situation may be much clearer.
Other ways to offset stress include:
Laughter – this could be as simple as spending time with friends and family or, watching a comedy show.
Physical activity – go walking. Get away from the city or the town if you can and go somewhere scenic. Spend a little time revitalizing the senses with wonderful scenery, mountains, lakes, rivers or forests. Practice yoga – this is the perfect way to ground you and to give you a connection between the mind and body. On the yoga mat, you can release the stresses of life.
Read- step away from your everyday life and instead, indulge in a good book that distracts you from the here and now and takes you to faraway places.
Meditate – meditation is a wonderful way to alleviate tension from the body and to remove stress from your life. Meditation can be used in numerous ways for healing purposes, to open the mind and to find the true pathway in between the spaces of your everyday reality and your problems.
Sleep – if you want to be able to cope with the stressors of life, sleep is so important. It’s not always easy to switch off the mind at night but using relaxation techniques or meditating can make a big difference in falling asleep and staying asleep all night. Try taking valerian herbal tincture at night as this can help you to relax and to sleep deeply.
Practice a breathing technique
When you are tense, it is common to breathe shallowly. So, by taking some time out, even for a few minutes or so, you can distract the mind from daily tasks and problems and instead, just breathe. Sit quietly and make sure you will not be disturbed.
Close your eyes, inhale through your nose and feel the sensation of the breath as it enters your nostrils. Feel the expansion of your lungs as the air fills your being. Then, feel your lungs reduce on the exhalation and notice the warmer breath as it leaves your lungs. Inhale again, see the air, now as a color of your choice and visualize this colored air within your lungs. Exhale, and watch as the colored air now leaves your body. Repeat several times, keeping your focus strong. This breathing technique increases focus and confidence.
If you feel pressured by the stresses of your life, it makes sense to try to eradicate some of these triggers and this will immediately reduce the amount of stress on you. But, it’s important to also deal with the emotional and physical elements, the residue of the stressors that weave a nasty element into your life. Meditation can reduce the impact of these elements and will open your mind, helping you to feel calmer and more in control of life. This meditation is for when time is against you.
Open the doorway of the mind
Begin your meditation and step into a world where time does not exist. Visualize yourself in a small room, with arched ceilings and doorways and where the room is predominantly clear of clutter. There is space here and order and yet, the room is welcoming. Visualize this room as you desire. Inhale deeply and exhale fully. Let go of any tension within your body and walk towards the doorway you find most appealing. The other side of this door provides you with an escape from the problems of life. There are solutions on the other side. Visualize this how you most prefer. Step through the doorway and let the visualization unfold. Experience this moment in full. When you are ready, finish your meditation.
In conclusion, it is so important to ask yourself just how stressed are you? With realization and determination, you can start to make significant changes to your life, little by little. It’s important however to not ignore stress but to deal with it as it happens. Take control, you will be so glad you did.