Stress much?

Find New Ways to Manage Your Stress

We all react differently in different situations-that is what makes you, you and me, me! When we get to that certain place where we get stressed out will be different from each of us, however our bodies react very similar. Our bodies want to stay in homeostasis mode, where everything is happy and the body knows what is occurring. However, when a bear comes out of the woods, or an oncoming car hovers close to that median line or work deadlines start coming at you, your family has unresolved issues, your mother-in-law came into town-whatever the situation may be  STRESS will rear it’s ugly head. Our bodies parasympathetic system will keep us calm in the face of stress but our sympathetic system is our fight or flight response that kicks the hormones cortisol, norepinephrine and epinephrine in to ‘Go Mode” as well as stops our digestion momentarily. Norepinephrine and epinephrine work together to produce insulin and energy in case you need to hi-tail it out of there. When the stress is gone cortisol tells these hormones they aren’t needed any more and to digest as you normally would. It is normal for these hormones to go up and down daily but when you are stressed out – ALL THE TIME- your cortisol goes up and stays up!

This is when weight control or loss is difficult. Your body will resist weight loss when your cortisol levels are high as your body thinks you may starve so it will store away everything it gets until it is sure the stress is gone and can let go of the ‘load’. Thus, managing your stress is so very  important! 

Here are some ways to relieve stress: 

  • Meditation: Just 3-5 minutes a few days a week will reduce stress and increase mental clarity.

  • Journaling: Writing your feelings can help you “get it off your chest” as well as when rereading your journal entry you can identify triggers, prioritize and decide what you can control and then execute.

  • Exercise: regular exercise, a walk or even 3 minutes of “Shake it off” with Taylor Swift can change your perception and refocus your mind.

  • Yoga: The soft music, stretching and mind clearing poses can reduce stress.

  • Smile: Turn that frown upside down, laughing is can be better than crying! Get those endorphins going to gain a new perspective. 

  • Relaxation techniques: 

    Visualization-mind memory-just as important as muscle memory

    Lavender Essential Oil – calming properties 

    Deep Breathing – activates the naturally calming parasympathetic system 

    Lay on back with feet perpendicular to ground – straight up in the air or against a wall so your body makes an L. 

7. Give Thanks/Focus on Gratitude-a shift in perspective can just what the doctor ordered. Try turning the stress around into something to be grateful for and see what happens!