What is stress anyway…? According to The Integrative Women’s Health Institute where I studied hormonal health. “…stress is defined as a state in which homeostasis is actually threatened or perceived to be so; homeostasis is reestablished by a complex repertoire of behavioral and physiological adaptive responses of the organism.”
Being stressed means your body is ramped up because it believes it needs to protect and defend itself.
This is an incredible system of survival if you are being chased by a lion, however, if your stress is chronic resulting from daily emails, emotional fears, etc. this system can create even more imbalance and stress.
Recently my doctor shared “your body is a symphony, each piece plays a role and each role impacts the outcome of the whole.”
Meaning, stress doesn’t exist in a vacuum. It is impacted and multiplied by various causes.
For most of my life, my focus on healing and transforming stress was around mindset. I knew that so much had to do with the constant state of fear I put myself in and felt in my body. This is an incredibly important part of changing your life experience. However, shining a light on any challenge means to see all parts. By educating yourself, you are empowering yourself!
There are 4 main causes of stress that are constantly at play:
Perceived Stress –The perception that you are not safe. This is a BIG one and I will be sharing more in the future.
The cause could be many things. For instance, facing new and unpredictable changes, feeling a lack of control and believing that harm may arise. If you have ever moved to a new home, welcomed a baby, made a big life transition, watched the news, prepared for an important business meeting, etc. Your mind started to tell your body that things are not safe.
What is really happening is that you are excited and nervous about the future and begin feeling uncomfortable and unsafe because you are not in total control. Your mind and heart are deeply connected. There are constant internal messages being sent throughout your body at all times.
Circadian Disruption – The imbalance of light and dark exposure to the brain.
Over expose to blue light and other fluorescent lights leads to imbalance. That is, light from tv, cell phones, ipads, etc. Our brain begins to perceive perpetual day light. In other words, the brain is confused and doesn’t realize it is light from a device and not from nature. This is why, it is a great idea to get out doors without sunglasses for at least 30 mins a day and turn off your devices by 9pm. You can reset the natural rhythm of day and night.
Another cause is shift work. If you are a nurse or a flight attendant your day time and night time hours are upside down. You are changing the natural system and cycle of your body and day.
Inflammatory Signaling – Inflammation leads to stress and stress leads to more inflammation. Inflammation is the result of a revved up immune system.
Most diseases are a result of some form of inflammation. For example, arthritis is inflammation of the joints. Heart disease is inflammation of the arteries. Why is your immune system working so hard? The body is trying to fight off or rid itself infection which is a good thing if it is rare. However, if you are chronically inflamed due to an array of reasons, including poor diet, stress, minor food allergies, an inactive lifestyle, your body can’t handle the imbalance.
Glycemic Dysregulation – The blood sugar roller coaster.
Glucose is the term for sugar in blood. Glucose is regulated by the hormone insulin. After we eat, glucose levels rise and insulin comes in to normalize blood sugar levels. When blood sugar levels rise rapidly (a lot of sugar), the body responds by releasing too much insulin which leads to low blood sugar and feelings of exhaustion, moodiness and hunger. This sugar roller coaster ride is a main cause of stress.
I know that is a lot to take in. Remember that you don’t need to feel stressed by any of this. You are simply educating yourself and can make choices as usual. My first tip is to notice what’s happening in your mind and in your body when you become anxious or overwhelmed. That simple, just become aware.
We are not separate from our bodies. Everything is connected and working together to support your highest potential and happiness.
Please share your comments below and feel free to ask questions or connect with me!
Love and Light,