Understanding and Managing Stress

Stress is destructive to health and relationships. Stress is experienced when a person feels demands and expectations that exceed perceived available resources. Resources may relate to time, money, skill, tools, etc. The perception of the imbalance between the demands and resources and potential future adverse consequences for failing to meet the demand or expectation does not have to be correct in order for the situation to cause stress. That is, false understandings or beliefs can cause significant stress. Therefore any event or thought that causes a person to perceive a threatening demand is a potential source of stress.
It is true that on this planet there are situations that need to be reacted to and in the absence of stress, our species would never have survived. Accordingly, a positive aspect of stress is that it alerts you to a threat and provides you with increased levels of energy and motivation to help in coping with the threat. However mishandled stress or too much stress causes strain and can be devastating for you.
The negative effects of stress are numerous and perhaps we don’t even know them all. However, they include fatigue, irritability, anger, difficulty concentrating, a lower immune system, a variety of serious physical health problems, insomnia, depression, anxiety, loss of personal relationships, over eating and drug and alcohol abuse.
There is no one way to deal with stress. Stress may be reduced, eliminated or managed by addressing one or more of the underlying components of stress. For example you might reduce demands by planning ahead, increasing available resources, just saying “no”, finding ways to increase efficiency. Or, you might reduce the stress emotions by taking a break from the stressful situation, relaxing, exercising, getting a massage, taking a vacation. Or, you might eliminate or mitigate the impact of the consequences of failing to meet the demand by preparing for the consequences (e.g. having a savings account or buying insurance), changing your priorities (so what if the car doesn’t get washed?), accepting what can’t be changed, putting energy towards improving the situation.
You need to have the correct perspective concerning the demands you face. You need to be aware of your capabilities, resources, and the real consequences of failing to meet a demand. You need to see things accurately without distortions. Believing something is terrible when it is only just unpleasant can cause unnecessary stress.
There is scientific evidence that suggests that the experience of stress in the past magnifies how you react to stress in the future because stress actually alters your body and your brain. You can become sensitive to stress and then even the smallest stressor can invoke reactions in your brain and body that cause your brain to treat a small incident as a life threatening event. Because some stress is requisite for humans, your body is designed to provide an appropriate reaction to stress depending on the degree of the threat. However, when you become sensitive to stress due to earlier stress experiences, your body’s response that is designed for life threatening events is activated by ordinary trials and tribulations of life such that you respond inappropriately (in other words, overreact). This sensitivity to stress may begin during childhood. It is likely that the impact is greater when it is initiated during childhood.
It is of extreme importance that you become aware of your body so that you can sense when it is getting stressed and either reduce the stressors (i.e. demands perceived to exceed resources and perceived negative consequences) or take time for meditation, yoga, exercise, gardening, reading, writing, listening to music, going for a walk. Also, the knowledge about being sensitive to stress due to past stress experiences (i.e. the life-death reaction to inconsequential matters) is helpful, if it applies to you, because you can use logic and rational thoughts to understand why you’re reacting as you are and to correct this behaviour if you feel yourself overreacting to stressors.
You are vulnerable to stress and will experience stress; but you do not have to be its victim. You have the ability to control stress and what you permit it to do to you.

Energy Medicine: The Medicine Of The Future—Now Part 2: Tools And Diagnostic Techniques That Measure Energy

Last week, we discussed energy sources in general terms, describing vibrational frequencies and the interactions between the currents of all kinds that flow around and through us. Today I want to propose some thoughts that may seem outlandish, but I’m going to try to explain in terms that will make the concepts more clear. Here’s a revolutionary thought:All healing takes place at the energy level.Let’s look at some commonly accepted energy tools that are in use today in the practice of medicine. Interestingly, a number of these have been in use for decades, and their reliability is unquestioned for diagnostic and healing purposes. But putting two and two together, we’ll move on…Years ago, a researcher discovered that the heart gives off electrical waves that can be measured. The healthy tissue in a patient gives off a very specific pattern. Stressed or dead tissue gives off a distinctly different pattern from the healthy tissue. The resultant recordings of those waves we know today as an electrocardiogram, or EKG. An EKC is a powerful diagnostic tool; it picks up the specific electrical changes in the heart’s waves when anyone being tested is having a myocardial infarction (heart attack), or has had one in the past. An electroencephalogram (EEG) is capable of determining normal and abnormal brain waves, to the point that probable sources of seizures can be diagnosed because of abnormal electrical signals given off in the brain. We have also discovered and labeled different waves per second (delta waves) have a frequency of 1-3 waves per second, called Hertz or Hz, which is seen in people in deep sleep. Theta waves have a frequency of 4-7 Hz, which is seen in different stages of sleep, and with emotional stress. Alpha waves, at 8-14 Hz, are seen in the alert state. Finally, beta waves, 14-50 Hz, are present when there is intense mental activity. A magnetic resonance imaging, or MRI, is a machine capable of interpreting normal and abnormal responses of tissue to magnetic energy, from which an image can be extracted. Spectroscopy is a laboratory diagnostic tool which can identify a specific substance based on the frequency that it gives off. This frequency is measured and placed on a graph. Every substance gives off a different frequency, which can be used to identify the substance.Ultrasound is basically a tool where sound waves are released, and as they bounce off tissue and return, this feedback can be interpreted by a machine and create an image. There are PET scans, and SPECT scans, which can differentiate healthy tissue from diseased tissue by the energy characteristics that are given off. We have many other tools in medicine, including auditory-evoked response, visual-evoked response, myograms and oculograms, all of which tell us whether that particular tissue is normal or abnormal, based on its measurable electrical output. There are also many therapeutic tools or modalities in medicine. One of the first was pulsed electromagnetic field (PEMF) therapy, which releases specific low frequency, electromagnetic pulses to stimulate bone healing in non-healing bone fractures. Lithotrypsy has laser focused frequencies that are capable of breaking down kidney stones. Many of us have heard of or used light therapy for depression, called seasonal affective disorder (SAD). Acupuncture is recognized within the medical field for its effectiveness in pain relief, which is based on centuries’ old energy flow lines called meridians that flow throughout the body. There are also cold and hot laser therapy, which have been used in the healing of wounds and skin disorders. Outside of the medical field are many energy and electrical devices that are in common use. For instance, the computer chip in your computers, or the remote controls that send frequencies to television sets, radios, light switches. Even though we don’t understand electricity, we have become accustomed to using lights and other things that need electricity to function. We even accept energy emissions from billions of light years away that are obtained through our telescopes. Gravity, much misunderstood, is a force that attracts objects from a distance to the center. A polygraph machine is capable of sensing electrical changes at the skin level, which differentiate a relaxed state of the parasympathetic nervous system and the anxious state of the sympathetic nervous system to determine the stress in peoples’ bodies in answer to specific questions.This background is merely useful for opening up our minds to the concept of how much energy and frequencies and magnetics and electrical devices are influencing our lives today, that we take for granted, whether we understand them or not. In order for us to recognize the potential impact of energy and frequencies on the body, we’ll start by understanding how individual cells function in our bodies. That will be in our next article. For now, let’s recap the different energy tools and sources we’ve reviewed today:In the medical field:Electrocardiogram (EKG)Electroencephalogram (EEG)1. Theta waves2. Alpha waves3. Beta wavesMagnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)Ultrasound1. PET scans2. SPECT scansAuditory-evoked ResponseVisual-evoked ResponseMyogramOculogramPulsed Electromagnetic Field Therapy (PEMF)LithotrypsyLight TherapyAcupunctureCold Laser TherapyHot Laser TherapyOutside of the medical field:Computer chipsRemote controlsLight travel visible through telescopesGravityPolygraph machinesCell phonesIpodsInternetTelephone wiresIt might be interesting to take a walk around your house or office and observe the number of devices that utilize energy from known and unknown sources! For more information, visit

Think yourself Thin

In this celebrity obsessed world, our quest for perfection has never been greater.  Trying to live up to how we think we should look can govern an enormous part of our everyday lives.  So wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could find a way to enjoy natural weight loss by using an easy and highly effective method that puts an end to fad dieting and constant self-doubt?


The Technique in a Nutshell

It’s called the mind-body technique and has been used for centuries in various forms to cure all types of ailments and to promote a stronger, fitter and healthier body. This particular method also combines some basic Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) exercises that can actually stop cravings and feelings of self-doubt before they take hold and eventually destroy your personal goals for weight loss.  Above all, this incredible method for weight loss requires nothing more than the power of your mind and a willingness to believe that it will work for you.  It has been shown to be extremely effective in procuring a positive attitude towards yourself that can make a big change to both your figure and your self esteem.

The two-part technique is very easy to master and, if adhered to, it’s benefits can be seen within two to three weeks.  Practice this initial visualization exercise every day until you achieve your ideal weight and combine it with the EFT integration method, described later on, for maximum results.  Keep using the technique to maintain your ideal weight once you achieve it.


Visualization Toning

 Find a time in the day when you won’t be disturbed and strip down to your underwear.  Now stand in front of a mirror (full length is best), relax your body and your mind as you take a good look at yourself.  Breath in and out slowly as you focus on your body.

Now take a slow, deep breath in and slowly allow your eyes to close whilst mentally holding onto the image of your body.

Continue holding your breath as you begin to individually visualize those areas of your body that you are unhappy with.  Your stomach perhaps, or maybe your upper arms or thighs.  Now, as you exhale slowly, see those areas start to change,  See them become smaller, tighter, more ton ed and defined.  

Keep your eyes closed as you continue to slowly and deeply breathe in and out now, visualizing your body becoming thinner, more toned and more defined with every breath you take.  

Now take a mental snapshot of your new improved body.  Visualize a dial at the bottom of your image and, in your minds eye, mentally turn it until the image becomes sharper, more colourful and so bright that it glows.   

Open your eyes again and look at your body in the mirror.  You’ll notice how your physical reflection has faded slightly.  Now allow your eyes to close again and feel yourself relaxing more with every breath you take.

With your eyes still closed, visualize your new and improved body again.  Take a very deep breath and turn the dial again to intensify it’s color, sharpness and brightness even more. 

Repeat this process at least ten times during each daily session.


EFT Integration

Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) was developed in the mid 1990s by Gary Craig who was inspired by the benefits produced by the earlier Thought Field Therapy (TFT).  The technique focuses quite simply on applying acupressure to certain parts of the body through tapping key points which correspond to the Meridians used in Chinese Medicine.  It’s really a very simple and effective technique and can relieve many physical and psychological conditions.  When used in conjunction with the Think Yourself Thin Visualization Toning exercises, it can be particularly effective in battling against food cravings and addiction.  


EFT Points

Please note that the Think Yourself Thin plan doesn’t use every single EFT point in its exercises.  For simplicity and ease of adoption, we have found that the following eight points, when tapped as shown below, are the most effective in combating cravings when used in conjunction with the visualization toning exercises.

The Sore Spot – This is found on your chest in the area where you would  pin a badge. Gently tap with your fingertips until you locate an area that feels tender.

The Bridge of the Eyebrow – This is the point where the bone of your eyebrow turns into the bridge of your nose.

The Inside Corner of the Eye – On the bone in the inside corner of your eye.

Under The Eye – On the bone just below and in line with the centre of your eye.

Under The Nose – The space between your nose and upper lip

Under The Mouth – In the indentation between your chin and your lower lip

The Karate Chop Point – on the side of your hand, roughly in line with your life line.

When you’ve located each point, try tapping each one ten times and see what kind of feelings it produces.  If you’re feeling stressed, you’ll probably notice that you feel a lot more relaxed afterwards.  Try scoring the feelings you have before and after each tapping session between one and ten (one being the most relaxed and ten being the most stressed).


Controlling those cravings with EFT

So you’re desperately craving that chocolate bar in the cupboard and you know that you really don’t need it as you’ve just enjoyed a nice healthy lunch.  Here’s how to use EFT to rid yourself of the craving and get back on track.

 Tap your EFT points ten times whilst focuses on the object you crave (e.g. chocolate).  Say to yourself (either silently or aloud) “even though I crave this (say whatever it is you crave) I am still a wonderful person and I deserve to lose weight”.  

It may sound terribly corny, but keep repeating this mantra as you tap each point until you start to feel your craving diminish.  Eventually, after several minutes, you’ll feel a lot less like eating that chocolate bar and, hopefully, extremely proud of yourself for not yielding to the temptation. This method is so simple and it really does work. 


Making it Work for You

By integrating the simple EFT methods shown above into your Think Yourself Thin schedule, you will, with the self-belief and confidence that comes from your visualization toning, achieve the body you deserve.  Don’t expect miracles overnight but, day by day, see the difference that a positive and guided mind can make to your body size and self-image and start being the person you’ve always wanted to be.


Stress Really Affects Your Health

Stress is something that everybody endures on a fairly regular basis, but when it starts to impact negatively on your body and mind, it means you are not only stressed you are distressed.
Alot of people don’t realise that stress is not only something we cope with but also a state of being that negatively impacts the body. In fact, stress has a bigger impact on our bodies than most of us care to acknowledge.
Here are some facts about Stress and the affects on your body.
When you look at these facts it is hard to deny that we all need to learn how to manage our stress more effectively. Some of these facts include: * 75-90% of all doctor visits are stress-related
* 43% of all adults have health problems related to stress
* Stress is known to cost American businesses more than $300 billion each year
* 82% of workers are at least a little stressed in the workplace
Seven Ways Your Body is Affected By Stress
There are two kinds of stress. The “good” stress is called eustress but we generally only hear about the “bad” stress known as chronic stress or distress.
Chronic stress creeps up on you and gradually affects your health. At first, you may not even notice the symptoms of chronic stress at all! And if this stress is not managed, the symptoms will get worse and its effects may even be irreversible.
Seven ways in which stress may manifest itself in your body are:
1. Anxiety. Those who are stressed are likely to deal with uncontrollable levels of anxiety. Anxiety and depression often go hand in hand, and this can cause many different changes in the physiological functioning of the body.
2. Depression. When you are stressed out, it is very common for people to become depressed. There are only so many chemicals in the brain to help a person deal with stress, and when they are used up, they’re used up. This can lead to a person becoming profoundly depressed in what seems like a relatively short period of time.
3. Diabetes. Type 2 diabetes is one of the fastest growing epidemics in the world and both mental and physical stress can cause rapid fluctuations in blood sugar levels. The long-term effects associated with this include heart disease, blindness, liver problems, kidney disease, and more.
4. Heart disease. Stress is very closely linked to heart attacks and death associated with cardiovascular disease. When stress is not managed, the body breaks down quickly and the heart is often profoundly impacted.
5. Obesity. We often cope with stress by consuming unhealthy, fattening foods. Plus, stress prohibits the control of necessary chemicals that are needed to break down fat, which can lead to obesity.
6. Sexual dysfunction. Stress is one of the most common reasons associated with impotence in men and lost libido in women.
7. Hair loss. We often tease our friends and family when they begin to lose hair, but this can be a symptom of unmanaged stress. If your hair is falling out prematurely don’t blame genetics, look closely at how you are dealing with the stress in your life and see if there are things you can do to control it more effectively.
As you can see, stress can affect your health in many ways. This is by no means an all-inclusive list of how stress affects your body and health. You may also suffer from hyperthyroidism, obsessive-compulsive disorder, tooth and gum disease, ulcers, and even cancer. Stress is serious stuff! This is all the more reason to start actively managing your stress today.
Little things add up! Even if your stress seems overwhelming, start trying to change things by adapting small strategies to combat your stress. Every little positive thing you do can lead to a big change!
Dont let sress affect your health and get onto it now!

Stress: the Silent Killer

Stress is an overlooked reason people have health problems. Reducing stress is guaranteed to give you a healthier life and can prevent future health problems!
Most of us feel some kind of stress every day.
The dictionary defines stress as physical, mental, or emotional strain or tension. Everyday 87% of the population lives under this type of stress. We worry about money, children, jobs, our spouse or significant other and hundreds of other things on a daily basis.
Just driving to the corner store can cause tension as you dodge that crazy driver or see the price of gas at the pump.
Some people are very aware of the strain and tension in their life, but many of us live with stress that we don’t see or are unwilling to admit we have. We just go about our daily life thinking this is the way it is supposed to be, the norm.
We build our lives and behaviors around stress. Even children and especially teens have stress. They worry about their friends, their weight, if they are wearing the right clothes or if they have a zit (acne).
More Medical Problems are caused by Stress than anything else!
Learning the right way to relax and reduce tension can help your body work better and create a healthier life. Your body’s natural processes are affected by stress. Stress can be a killer and reducing your stress should be a top priority in your life.
Stress can cause:
1. Your Body to Age: – Which means all your cells and organs are getting old before their time. When your stomach ages, food sits in it longer and can start to spoil before its even digested. This can lead to colon problems. Your skin and heart can also be affected by stress.
2. Sugar to Build Up: – When humans were hunters and gatherers, they had stress when they were being stalked by a predator. The body understood this stress and released sugars for instant energy so we could flee or fight. Now, when the stress causes the sugars to release, we don’t use them for energy. They go unused and the body stores them as fat instead.
3. Your Blood to Thicken: – Thicker blood allows it to carry more oxygen to help with our fight or flight as previously mentioned. Again we don’t use this feature as nature originally intended and now thicker blood only starts the process of building up plaque on the walls of our arteries.
4. Increased Number of Diseases: – Stress depresses the immune system. Colds and viruses are more common in stressed people. Viruses can cause some cancers, thus keeping a strong healthy immune system is a must. Stress has also been linked to Parkinson’s disease.
99% of all Disease is caused by Stress!
When your body senses stress, it automatically gets you ready to run or fight. This is just part of your biological makeup.
First, the natural response causes the stomach and colon to shut down. – Extra blood is needed by the body and it takes it from the stomach and colon. – With no blood, these organs age faster. – Food that was being digested now just sits there and starts to rot. You end up with rotten food in your colon. As you can imagine, eating rotten food can make you sick, so can having it sitting in your body. – 90% of your immune system is battling disease in the colon. Ask any doctor who does autopsies about people’s colons. It’s not a pretty picture.
Second, your metabolism changes. – The body needs energy and it needs protein. – It goes to the muscles to get it. – If you don’t replace the protein and all the amino acids and enzymes, you lose muscle. – You lose body shape when you lose muscle. – The body replaces the muscle with FAT!
I have just described a majority of the human population.
We are stressed out and because of the stress we are battling colds, the flu, allergies, you name it because of our reduced immune system. So What Can I Do to avoid this downward spiral?
Dealing with stress is something we can manage. There are several steps that can reduce stress and when that becomes too difficult, there are things we can do to counteract the negative effects stress has on our bodies.
First and foremost, the best way to alleviate the problems associated with stress is to get rid of the stress in our lives.
Some things you can do include learning relaxation techniques and ridding yourself of stressful habits. Everyone is different and deals with everyday situations in different ways, but we can all learn to reduce the stress in our life. Second, because it is impossible to get rid of all stress, we need to give our bodies the things it needs to be healthy and overcome the ill effects that stress creates.
These can include:
1. Provide you body with the nutrients it needs. While this sounds simple enough, when you body is under stress , the stomach shuts down so even if you are eating a good diet, your body isn’t getting what it needs.
Supplementation is the answer. However, not all supplements are created equal. Make sure your supplements can be used by the body when it is under stress. This means they get the nutrients to your cells where they are needed and not just take them on a nice ride through your digestive tract.
2. Boost your immune system.
Stress makes our bodies more susceptible to disease. It lowers the overall immunity and creates a situation where a majority of the immune system is battling disease in the colon.
3. Get more protein.
Most people don’t get enough protein. Stress causes the body to need more of it and so your body raids the muscles to get what it needs. When there is nothing to replace the muscle protein it gets replaced with fat. We slowly lose our shape and definition as we lose muscle.
Adding more meat to our diet is not the best solution. Today, almost all commercial meat is contaminated in some way. The beef, pork and chicken you buy from the supermarket is pumped full of antibiotics.
A better solution is soy protein. This is a plant protein that has all the amino acids a human body needs.
I read a great article once about everything I ever needed to know I learned in Kindergarten. It said something like “Live a balanced life – learn some and think some and draw and paint and sing and dance and play and work every day some.” It’s amazing, if we think back to when we were young and now as adults followed some of those same rules how much better our lives could be. I can hear my Mom saying “Eat your vegetables and Take your vitamins”.
We can all learn a thing or two about life and living if we sit back and watch little kids.
So relax, listen to your body and learn how to reduce the stress and its effects on your health. This could be the most important action you can take towards living a longer, healthier and more enjoyable life.

Learn How To Manage Your Own Stress

As we’ve said before, stress is a part of life.  There’s no getting away from it.  In fact, some stress is good stress.  You may not believe that, but sometimes stress can motivate us to do things we may not normally do in a relaxed state.  Stress can make us brave enough to go forward when normally we might hesitate.We have to be resilient in order to effectively cope with stress and help it enhance our life instead of control it.  How do you get strong and resilient?  By learning how to take control of your stress and make it work FOR you instead of AGAINST you.Recognizing stress symptoms can be a positive influence in that we’re compelled to take action – and the sooner the better. It’s not always easy to discern why you have the stress in each situation but some of the more common events that trigger those emotions are the death of a loved one, the birth of a child, a job promotion, or a new relationship.  We experience stress as we readjust our lives. Your body is asking for your help when you feel these stress symptoms.We’re going to give you many suggestions in this chapter.  Not all of them will work for you, but we’re willing to bet that some of them will.There are three major approaches to manage stress. The first is the action-oriented approach. In this method, the problems that cause stress are identified and necessary changes are made for a stress free life. The next approach is emotionally oriented and in it, the person overcomes stress by giving a different color to the experience that caused stress. The situation, which causes stress, is seen humorously or from a different angle. I especially advocate this approach to stress management.  Sometimes if you don’t laugh at a situation, you’ll cry – uncontrollably.  That’s no solution.  So learn to see the humor instead of the doom.The third way is acceptance-oriented approach. This approach focuses on surviving the stress caused due to some problem in the past.The first stress management tip is to understand the root cause of your stress. No one understands your problem better than you do. A few minutes spend to recognize your true feelings can completely change the situation. During this process, identify what triggered the stress. If someone close to your heart is nearby share it with the person. If you are overstressed and feel you are going to collapse, take a deep breath and count till ten. This pumps extra oxygen into your system and rejuvenates the entire body.When under severe stress meditate for a moment and pull out of the current situation for a little while. Stand up from your current position and walk. Stretch yourself. Soon you will find that the stress has lessened. This is because you have relaxed now and relaxation is the best medicine for stress. Smiling is yet another way of stress management. If you are at the work place, just stand up and smile at your colleague in the far corner. You will see a change in your mood. Learn some simple yoga or mediation techniques.You can also invent your own stress management tips. The basic idea is to identify the cause of stress and to pull out from it for a moment and then deal with it. Taking a short walk and looking at objects in nature is another stress reliever. Drinking a glass of water or playing small games are simple stress management techniques. The whole idea is change the focus of attention and when you return to the problem, it does not look as monstrous as you felt before.

Managing Stress – A life Changing Journey




What is stress?

 Stress is our body’s way of reacting emotionally and physically to any kind of external pressures or demands. Although this kind of response may be beneficial at times, like when it provides the needed strength and energy in times of danger, too much stress or a prolonged state of stress is harmful to our body.

 What causes stress?

 Stress is caused by a variety of factors for different people. For most people and for most of the time, it is usually caused by unexpected and unpleasant changes which we are not physically and emotionally prepared to handle.

 Some of the factors that have been found to contribute greatly to stress include the following:


Overwork – Working too hard with little time for rest and relaxation has been a constant source of stress for many people.

Home stressors – This is particularly true for those who live with an extended family or relatives. Another classic example of a home stressor is when a stay-at-home mother chooses to do everything for the family thereby tiring herself out everyday and lacking the time for a much needed rest.

Survival Stress – This is the body’s natural reaction when faced with physical danger. Our body responds with a burst of strength and energy which enable us to either “fight” or “flee” from the situation. We can therefore consider this as an acceptable kind of stress.

Internal Stress – This one is caused by none other than our own selves. When we think negatively and worry too much about things we can’t control and put ourselves in situations which may cause too much pressure or demands in our emotional state, we become stressed.

Environmental factors – These are the things around us that disrupt our normal lives and can put a strain on our emotional well-being. Some of these factors may include irritating people, noise, crowded areas, and emergency situations.


Who gets stressed?

 Stress is a classic feature of human life and has become part of almost everyone else’s system. I’m pretty sure that we have all experienced stress at one time or another, whether working on a highly demanding task, trying to get along with difficult people whom we have to spend most of out time with either at home or at work, or taking care of our family and having to work at the same time.

 People of any gender and from all age groups can suffer from stress and anxiety when exposed to any of the different stressors mentioned above.


How does stress affect us?


Stress has been known to cause negative changes to our physical, physiological, and psychological well-being, either directly or indirectly, leading to health problems, low work productivity, poor judgment, and broken relationships among many other things. Some studies even suggest that stress can literally kill us in the long run, as it contributes to the risk of having a heart attack or other fatal diseases.

 Some of the changes that can happen to us when we are stressed may include the following:


Physical changes – headaches, weight loss, abnormal fatigue levels, difficulty sleeping, body aches, increased susceptibility to colds and infections

Psychological / emotional changes – short temper, depression, lack of confidence, poor concentration, helplessness, anxiety attacks, loss of direction, inability to relax, crying spells

Behavioral – turning to drugs or alcohol, becoming destructive, forgetfulness, inability to commit to something or to make decisions

Relationships – intolerance of certain people, not wanting to socialize, decreased sex drive, nagging, resentment, problems with spouse and/or children


How to reduce stress


One of the most important things to remember when handling stress is that everything has to start within us. We can never control what happens in our lives but we can always choose how to face the stressful situations. Here are some ideas that may help prevent or reduce stress.

       Think positively. Negative thoughts have never solved any problem!

Accept changes as part of life and learn to deal with them.

Do something enjoyable at least once a day. This may take as little as 5 minutes of your time!

Strengthen family ties and develop healthy relationships with friends and co-workers.

Eat well and maintain a healthy lifestyle. Join weekly yoga or dance classes, attend group exercises, or indulge in recreational activities that interest you. Having a healthy body is one sure way of protecting oneself against stressful situations.

Be aware of the different factors that cause stress in your life and make every possible way to avoid them.  

Develop skills in money and time management.

Reach out to other people and try to help others in your own little ways. The feeling of fulfillment that comes from being able to help people can boost your self-confidence and strengthen relationships.

Strengthen spiritual resources and develop a strong faith.


These are only among the tried and tested ways to reduce the stress in our lives. Some may be effective for other people while some of these may not cause any positive change at all. What is therefore important is for us to know ourselves better and to figure out which solution can help us overcome the different challenges that life throws at us each and every day. Remember, managing stress is not a one-time deal but rather a life-long journey to a happy and healthy life!


Stress- A Part of Daily Life

Stress- A Part of Daily Life

Existence is a gradually becoming a very complicated process. In the olden days, life was much simpler. People were bothered with the day to day proceedings. They did not have much complicated life styles. Their unhappiness was much more basic. Maybe it stemmed from lack of money or resources, or the illness of relatives etc. The word ‘stress’ was virtually unknown at that time. These days, every few sentence includes the word stress in it. Most people do not quite realize what exactly it is.

The word ‘stress’ is defined by the Oxford Dictionary as “a state of affair involving demand on physical or mental energy”. A situation or circumstance (not always adverse), which can disturb the normal physical and mental health of an individual. In medical terms ‘stress’ is defined as an alteration of the body’s homeostasis. This demand on mind-body occurs when it tries to cope with incessant changes in life.

A ‘stress’ condition seems ‘relative’ in nature. Extreme stress conditions, psychologists say, are detrimental to human health but in moderation stress is normal and, in many cases, proves useful. Stress, nonetheless, is synonymous with negative conditions.

“Nothing gives one person so much advantage over another as to remain always cool and unruffled under all circumstances.”
—Thomas Jefferson

The events that provoke stress are called stressors, and they cover a whole assortment of situations – everything from absolute physical danger to making a class presentation.

The human body responds to stressors by activating the nervous system and specific hormones. The hypothalamus signals the adrenal glands to produce more of the hormones adrenaline and cortisol and release them into the bloodstream. These hormones speed up heart rate, breathing rate, blood pressure, and metabolism. Blood vessels open wider to let more blood flow to large muscle groups, putting our muscles on alert. Pupils dilate to improve vision. The liver releases some of its stored glucose to increase the body’s energy. And sweat is produced to cool the body. All of these physical changes prepare a person to react quickly and effectively to handle the pressure of the moment.

This natural reaction is known as the stress response. Stress in certain circumstances may be experienced positively. Eustress, for example, can be an adaptive response prompting the activation of internal resources to meet challenges and achieve goals. But the stress response can also cause problems when it overreacts or fails to turn off and reset itself properly.

Good Stress and Bad Stress

The stress response (also called the fight or flight response) is critical during emergency situations, such as when a driver has to slam on the brakes to avoid an accident. It can also be activated in a milder form at a time when the pressure’s on but there’s no actual danger – like stepping up to take the foul shot that could win the game, getting ready to go to a big dance, or sitting down for a final exam. A little of this stress can help keep you on your toes, ready to rise to a challenge. And the nervous system quickly returns to its normal state, standing by to respond again when needed.

But stress doesn’t always happen in response to things that are immediate or that are over quickly. Ongoing or long-term events, like coping with a divorce or moving to a new neighborhood or school, can cause stress, too. Long-term stressful situations can produce a lasting, low-level stress that’s hard on people. The nervous system senses continued pressure and may remain slightly activated and continue to pump out extra stress hormones over an extended period. This can wear out the body’s reserves, leave a person feeling depleted or overwhelmed, weaken the body’s immune system, and cause other problems.

Although just enough stress can be a good thing, stress overload is a different story – too much stress isn’t good for anyone. For example, feeling a little stress about a test that’s coming up can motivate you to study hard. But stressing out too much over the test can make it hard to concentrate on the material you need to learn.

Pressures that are too intense or last too long, or troubles that are shouldered alone, can cause people to feel stress overload. Here are some of the things that can overwhelm the body’s ability to cope if they continue for a long time:

Some stressful situations can be extreme and may require special attention and care. Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is a very strong stress reaction that can develop in people who have lived through an extremely traumatic event, such as a serious car accident, a natural disaster like an earthquake, or an assault like rape.

Some people have anxiety problems that can cause them to overreact to stress, making even small difficulties seem like crises. If a person frequently feels tense, upset, worried, or stressed, it may be a sign of anxiety. Anxiety problems usually need attention, and many people turn to professional counselors for help in overcoming them.

People who are experiencing stress overload may notice some of the following signs:

Experiences of stress differ from person to person. Some people become angry and act out their stress or take it out on others. Some people internalize it and develop eating disorders or substance abuse problems. And some people who have a chronic illness like blood pressure, blood sugar, arthritis etc may find that the symptoms of their illness flare up under an overload of stress.

Stress-management skills work best when they’re used regularly, not just when the pressure’s on. Knowing how to “de-stress” and doing it when things are relatively calm can help one get through challenging circumstances that may arise. Here are some things that can help keep stress under control.

Some people are very resilient under stressful situations. They’re cool under pressure and able to handle problems as they come up. They are very well balanced and capable.