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A different way to view Stress

Stress is my friend!

Often, when the pressures of life are building up and we are rushing around trying to keep on top of it all we can become exhausted and our bodies start to release stress hormones which keep our bodies on high alert. Sometimes this creates sensations in our bodies which can feel uncomfortable and frightening, for example, our hearts begin to pound and we can find ourselves short of breath! Although this feels alarming it is actually a clever function in our bodies designed to help us meet a challenge! Instead of interpreting these sensations within as our body preparing to ‘freak out!’ and cause us damage we should be viewing them as our body becoming more energised!

These stress hormones are helpful to you,  your pounding heart is preparing you for action, as you breathe faster, more oxygen gets to your brain. Another  hormone which is released when stressed is Oxytocin, often known as the cuddle hormone, as it is released when you hug! It invests your brain with social instincts and makes you reach out more to others, crave physical contact and strengthens relationships by giving you more empathy and compassion. Therefore, in a way, it is urging you to seek support by telling someone when life is hard. Your body wants you to be surrounded by those that care! It also protects your cardiovascular system from the effects of stress, helping heart cells to regenerate and heal quickly from stress damage.

So the message here is: don’t fear stress, see it as your friend! Respond to your instincts by reaching out for help or even connect to others through helping them. There is evidence a plenty to demonstrate that the bodies of those people who spent large portions of their time helping others showed no harmful effects of stress compared to those who didn’t. When you see your stress responses as helpful, it transforms fear into courage!

Stay happy and healthy!

Becky

 

August 2016