While you may try to relax by telling yourself ‘don’t stress’ in times of crisis, this could be doing more harm than good.
The reason being that humans are wired to deal with anxiety and brain activity that causes us to release stress hormones happens to keep us safe and alert.
Therefore, telling ourselves not to stress is redundant, and instead we should be looking at ways to manage it rather than unrealistically trying to eliminate it.
But if a little stress is healthy, how do we welcome it without feeling overwhelmed by it?
Dr Rita Louise is here to the rescue!
As a naturopathic physician and energy healer, she knows the intricacies of how a negative mindset can influence overall wellness and, crucially, how to conquer it.
To help others recognise the importance of reducing stress, Dr Louise likens our adrenal glands – where hormones are produced in response to stress – to batteries in a flashlight.
And just as batteries can drain, so can our internal ones.
Dr Louise said: “Chronic stress keeps our adrenals running all day and all night long.
“This non-stop usage can cause them to become fatigued and less able to deal with what is being presented to us on a day-to-day basis.”
She continued: “This ‘battery’ can become so depleted they, when put on the charger, may not charge at all or when it is charged, the charge expends itself quickly.”
Essentially, overworked adrenals can cause us to react to even the smallest thing and it can feel like we are walking on eggshells even though there may not be anything negative going on.
Yet we don’t have the privilege of popping down to Argos to replace our personal batteries, so we must recharge them in more proactive ways.
For Dr Louise’s top tips, check out the list below.
Breath during stress-filled times is critical. Danger, real or perceived activates our stress response, which causes us to shallow breathe or hold our breath.
Stress can also negatively affect our immune system.
When we breathe deeply, it activates our parasympathetic nervous system which makes it easier for the body to relax. It can help to reduce inner tensions and allow you to be more present.
2 Mindfulness And Chronic Stress
Try taking a mindful inventory around what you might be feeling. Challenging as this may sound, but it is possible to separate what you are thinking and feeling from your present reality.
Simple questions such as, ‘do I have food to eat’ or ‘do I have a place to live’, can help centre you back into reality and be used to break free from an out-of-control cycle of worry or rumination.
If you experience and emotion: acknowledge it. Remember emotions are designed to flow through the body. Do not hang on to. Like a bad joke, laugh at it and let it go. Take a few deep breaths and allow it move through you – do not let it become you. It is a wonderful and simple method.
3 Find Some Quiet Time
Try to meditate, go for a walk outside, work in your garden, journal, exercise or read a book. They are all great ways to naturally release unwanted energies that might be overloading your system.
Any activity that engages you, be it physically, mentally, or spiritually will work.
To check out Dr Louise’s full column, click here: How To Recharge.