Every day we experience mental micro-stress that, if not addressed for a period of time can build up to mental and physical health issues.
What is Stress?
Stress is your body’s way of responding to any kind of physical and/or emotional demand on one’s state of mind. Stress can be good or bad; when you are working out in the gym you are placing stress on your muscles with weight-bearing exercises to make them respond to increase your lean muscle mass.
But sitting frustrated in heavy traffic places a negative demand not just only on your muscles but also on your mental state, that can cause an overall negative feeling of tension through the muscles, short fast breathing and headaches.
For many career-driven women, juggling work and family commitments can place them under unnecessary high levels of stress. Before stress starts to manifest, it’s important to identify the warning signs so you are able to relax your mind, body and spirit on a daily basis to avoid it having a negative impact on the quality of your life.
Causes of Everyday Stress
— Lack of sleep due to insomnia or late nights out socialising
— Long working hours without taking holidays combined with a poor diet that may include smoking and drinking too much alcohol.
— Financial stress and/or unemployment
— Relationship and family stress
— Grief and inability to let go from past worries and negative memories
— Inability to cope with anger and obsessive behaviours
Symptoms of Stress-Related Burnout
— Loss of appetite and rapid weight loss over a period of weeks or months is a sure sign of stress.
— Lowered immune system and increased sickness that you can’t recover from
— Mental and physical exhaustion
— Sleep deprivation
— Mood swings and depression
— Loss of interest in exercise and regular daily activities
According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA), regular exercise — whether that is going to the gym or finding green space outdoors — combined with eating healthy food and cutting down on alcohol consumption and smoking can greatly assist in relieving stress.
Regular exercise releases natural chemicals called endorphins into the brain that reduce stress-related pain. Endorphins also trigger a natural, positive feeling of wellbeing.
Here are a few simple precautions you can take to decrease your stress levels before you reach physical and mental burnout.
— Make sure you take a one-hour lunch break away from your desk and use this time to go and walk in green space
— Schedule your holidays through the year where you can completely relax away from all forms of technology
— Practise daily meditation
— Avoid all forms of technology that require looking at a screen at least two to three hours before bedtime i.e. TV, smartphone and computer screens. Studies have shown that being exposed to blue and white light within one to three hours before you sleep prevents your brain from releasing melatonin, a hormone which tells your body it’s night-time and prepares you for sleep.
Amazin is a Prana Samyama meditation Yin Yoga teacher and performance coach having trained Olympic athletes to special forces. She is also a former natural competitive bodybuilder and the first Vietnamese internationally published health and fitness author and DNA fitness trainer. For more info click on amazinlethi.com