Stress has become so ingrained into daily life that it often goes unchecked. The more you encounter and experience stressful situations, the less you notice them. Instead, they unconsciously blend and happen as a part of your everyday routine. However, the big issue with stress is it destroys your health and life. The body can only minimize and manage so much before the real damage occurs. Therefore, it is critical to understand and cut back the daily grind for good health—mentally, physically, and emotionally.
Here are some ways to know if you are living in stress and five science-based backed proven ways to significantly help you lower it.
Table of Contents
Signs and Symptoms of Chronic Stress
- Shortness of breath
- Heavy belabored breathing
- Panic attacks
- Blurred vision
- Sleep issues
- Fatigue that takes a quick dip in energy instantly
- Muscle aches and tension
- Chest pains
- Feeling dizzy or faint
- Sudden weight gain or weight loss
- Sweating during sleep
- Existing problems pertaining to physical and mental health get worse
Stress is often hidden primarily in your emotions, attitudes, behavior, and personality.
- Irritability, frustration, and quickly losing your temper
- Being angry and impatient
- Feeling burdened, overwhelmed, anxious, or nervous
- Unable to enjoy yourself
- Depressed and unhappy every day
- Uninterested in life
- Lost sense of humor
- Existing mental health problems get worse
Five Scientific Proven Ways to Reduce Stress
Exercise research has been done many times over and over and has yet to lose a study to stress. Exercise is not just the key to a healthy heart. It is the stabilizer that reverses anxiety. Exercise diminishes stress hormones, like adrenaline and cortisol. And at the same time, it produces endorphins. Endorphins help alleviate tension and pain but dramatically enhance your mood, turning your frown upside down. And most importantly, your mood affects your choices, personality, attitudes, communication, and behaviors. Therefore, exercise positively elevates your mood and reduces stress, improving productivity at work and in life, energy, happiness, focus, and concentration.
Exercise is the greatest thing you can do to alter the trifecta- your mind, body, and emotions. It reduces the negative impact physically, mentally, and emotionally that damage your body, mind, personality, and life.
2. Do a stretching routine.
Yoga is great to do but not the only means of developing flexibility. You can do a simple stretching routine often throughout your day. Even if you are in the office, no problem, you don’t need to change your clothes or head off to a studio. Well, that’s up to you. However, stretching your muscles when tight will improve blood flow, relieve tension, and reduce pressure in your body that can affect your mind. Whether stress is being held captive in your nerves or muscles, stress is stress and has a reciprocal effect.
3. Try adaptogens.
Adaptogens are herbs that control stress and maintain balance in your body. When you have stress, you release cortisol. The more stress increases, the more cortisol is released. Cortisol being released at a high rate every day is terrible for you. It puts your body and mind in a fight-or-flight situation, even when sitting down relaxed. The ramifications of stress throughout your day are detrimental if not controlled.
Ashwagandha is an adaptogen that is an herb. It is not a cure but is highly effective at reducing stress. It acts as a cortisol inhibitor that mediates the amount of cortisol released. Like an endorphin makes you feel good, cortisol is a hormone that creates feelings of anxiety and frustration. Adaptogens, like ashwagandha, mitigate cortisol release.
Most times, stress is caused by a reaction to situations. But meditation helps to train your brain to focus and relax, so your reaction is not like a tsunami but more like a small wave. How big your response to stress dictates how much cortisol and adrenaline will be released. It is essential to know that no problem is too big that cannot be solved. Meditation will reduce the intensity of your reaction toward stressful situations to control stress.
5. Take magnesium and B6.
Magnesium and B6 regulate the nervous, cardiovascular, and musculoskeletal systems to function. When stress hits, cortisol is released and depletes magnesium and B6 quickly. So, eating foods high in magnesium and B6 will help keep stress and cortisol under control and replenish them. Conversely, low magnesium and B6, coupled with consistent and persistent stress, increases your risk of heart disease, diabetes, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease, mental and anxiety disorders as well as depression, etc.
On the other hand, what you eat also makes a big difference. For example, eating high sodium and fatty foods will physically create stress. Incorporating more fruits and vegetables will lower it.
Understand that stress is stress. It is a silent killer. Don’t assume you are not stressed. The essential thing to do is to recognize if stress is affecting your daily life and by how much. Even just a little stress will increase and spread more and more. It can get out of control quickly. And wherever it is in your body, it will wreak havoc on all your physiological systems.
As I said, stress can be so rooted and hidden that you can’t see where it is coming from- physically, mentally, emotionally, or spiritually.
But these five stress coping strategies, which are scientifically proven, are highly effective and will restore normality for you to see clearer and feel better.
For more tips on how to lower and manage stress, CLICK HERE!