Stress is what a lot of people are feeling right now especially with the current situation of the world on top of all the everyday life stresses we have to deal with.
Life was much simpler back in cave man times we would wake up, go hunt , eat , have community time and then go safely to bed in our cave. The biggest thing we had to worry about was where was our food coming from the next day and making sure we weren’t eaten by lions.
Now we have to contend with the stresses of work demands, traffic and social media just to name a few. This pushes our body into a flight or fight state and leaves us little time to think about what to eat, how to move our bodies and especially how to calm ourselves and de-stress.
When we’re constantly exposed to these stressful states our bodies think we are in constant danger and remain in a sympathetic state. When you’re in sympathetic state you can’t be in parasympathetic where your body rests, digests and heals.
What problems do most people suffer with?
They can’t sleep, poor digestion such a bloating, constipation and reflux and they are in pain. There can be many factors causing someone to experience these problems but stress has a massive part to play in it.
So how can we start to reduce our stress levels?
The thing we need to do first is we need to understand the magnitude of what stress actually does to our bodies and why it may even be more important than what we eat and they way move. If we don’t start to understand this then we wont see the importance in doing things that help us to de-stress and we won’t schedule it into our day.
One way we can measure stress is through heart rate variability. Heart rate variability measures your heart rate, skin conductance and skin temperature over a certain amount of time say 3-5 minutes. What the test is looking for is too see how varied your heart rate is over that time, most people think the heart should beat at 60 times a minute but in actual fact sometimes it should be 60, sometimes 58 sometimes 61. The rate should be constantly varying as this means our bodies are ready to adapt, if you needed to run for the bus then the heart rate could quickly increase and it would be used to doing that. However when we’re stuck in a stressed state the heart rate stays constant say at 63 bpm this puts the heart at risk because if it needs to adapt and increase suddenly this becomes a shock to the heart and could lead to a heart problems. This is why you hear of stories of people who seem very healthy, even their blood work is actually not too bad and their blood pressure not too high and suddenly they suffer a heart attack not because their “arteries were blocked” but because their heart wasn’t ready to adapt and couldn’t handle the sudden change.
This is why stress is quickly becoming the hidden killer in our society today but there is a solution. Stress in society has got worse over the years and we have had a whole generation of people who have been through school with no support on how to manage it. The importance was always on what to eat and how to move and very little on our mental health but that has to change. Lots of schools are no realising this and starting to integrate things like yoga, breathing practices and mindfulness into the school day to allow children to practice these techniques when they are younger so they can hopefully carry them through to later life.
For those of you that didn’t have that now is the time to carve yourself even just 10 minutes a day to practice a technique that will help you to lower your stress levels, rebalance your body to improve not only your health but your focus , concentration and emotions.
5 Things that you can do today to lower your stress
- Just Breath – this is the most powerful tool you have to de-stress and it doesn’t need to be the fancy Wim Hoff technique just literally sitting down for 10 minutes and breathing deeply in and out will start to do the job.
- Walking in Nature – studies have shown that walking in nature dramatically reduces stress and increases healing even photos of plants in your home or office have an effect too although not as powerful as being outside.
- Being creative – if you enjoy colouring or doing puzzles then do more of this. When we’re doing these exercises they fill up our mind wand leave little room for us to worry about the day and we begin to relax and de-stress.
- Get a massage – we all know the beneficial effects of massage and how relaxed we feel following one, when was the last time you actually looked after yourself and booked yourself in for a massage.
- Find a therapist – you have a trainer for your exercise, a nutritionist for to help you with you food but who are you using to help you with your mental health? We need to remove the stigma around having a therapist, it doesn’t mean you have a mental health condition but you want to look after your mental health maybe before you even gets to that point. Most of the team at Pure Wellness regularly see a variety of therapists to help manage their stress, talk through any problems and release old traumas so that they can live happy, healthy and stress free.
We hope that you have found this useful and if you would like anymore information then please do not hesitate to get in touch with us. Also stay tuned for exciting new programmes coming your way at Pure Wellness which will focus more on helping you restore proper breathing, emotional balance and community.
Resolve your problems, Restore what you lost , to Revive your Life and Consciousness.
The Pure Wellness Team