Posted by Dylan E
What is Stress?
Everyone has to deal with stress on a daily bases. So why does it bother us so much? Stress was originally meant as a kind of fight or flight mechanism for the body. Stress pumps your body up with adrenaline tightening your veins causing higher blood pressure giving your muscles more oxygen and energy. Though stress was meant to help get you away from danger but now the things we stress over are not actually putting us in harms way. We now stress over things like tests and job interviews, but we use to stress over things like getting food to survive or escaping any nearby danger. Stress was meant to provide energy to drive you to do something. Though now it seems like all stress does is sap all your energy. This caused by stress lasting so long instead of the short term its suppose to be.
The stress we use to feel back when it was meant to keep us alive, only lasted a few hours at most. Though now we stress over things days to weeks in advance like worrying about Christmas when its still Thanksgiving. This drive in mind and body puts a great strain on both parts giving you that “worn out” feeling. This “feeling” can damage you greatly. Lasting stress has put many into depression and even lead some to commit suicide. So handling your stress correctly is essential. You need to have a balance of stress and calm in your life. If you don’t have any stress in your life at all you wont have any motivation or drive to do better and great things. But too much stress could send you mentally spiraling out of whack into pit you can’t climb out of.
So stress management is key. You need to have stress but not to the point where it hurts you. That is where stress management comes in. It helps to give your body a balance of drive and relaxation that can mean a great deal in your life. Stress management can be anything (physically or mentally) that you enjoy. It could be anything from going to get a massage to going and watching a hockey game. What matters is that it something you enjoy.
Easy Things to do to Relax
- Take a warm bath
Studies have shown that a warm relaxing shower or bath boasts the mood. Also studies have shown that the sensation of warm water is similar to emotional warmth, or just plain being happy.
- Progressive Muscle Relaxation
This is just simply clenching every muscle in your body for 10 secs then unclenching them starting from your head to your feet. This relaxes all the muscles in your body soothing your mind and body. It is also shown to help you fall asleep faster at night.
- Yoga/Meditation or Exercise
This is a easy way to focus the mind and body. It also helps to stave off feelings of anxiety or to lessen it. Also a life with exercise is a healthier, happy and more enjoyable life.
Meeting and being with friends releases endorphins into the body which creates feelings of happiness. Also generally being with people who care about you help you to relax and be happy.
Food eaten for stress relief should be small treats only NOT emotional eating. Like eating a small treat of dark chocolate contains certain chemicals that loosen the blood vessels which reduces blood pressure. This gives you more of a sense of being calm.
The aromas of spearmint and lavender have proven de-stressing effects. A simple lavender scented candle or spearmint tea should help you to relax.
- Doing what you enjoy
Doing anything you truly enjoy doing will help you to take your mind off the stressful situation leading you to relax. This can be as simple as going out in nature to enjoy the beauty of it or going to see your favorite sports team(unless they are a terrible sports team and tend to upset you).
So managing your stress can be anything from enjoying a cup of tea to being with your family and friends. Everyone has stress in one way or another and these relaxation techniques may not work for you. So its your job to find something relaxing that will help you be a relaxed and motivated person you are meant to be.
*All information came from the two youtube videos and prior knowledge.
*Shout out to Watchwellcast and BBC for their great videos on stress and stress management!