Change your perception, change your response and watch the stress fade. Here's how...
We all feel stressed from time to time. Whether it’s getting stuck in traffic, dealing with an annoying work colleague and of course bigger things, like unexpected life-changing events. I believe one of our biggest problems today is not stress itself, but our response to it and how it is managed. Or in many cases, mismanaged!
In this two part article, I’m going to firstly address our perception, understanding (and misunderstanding) of stress itself. And in part two, I’ll share with you the tools and strategies that I have found the most helpful, effective and successful for both me and my wonderful personal training clients and attendees of Boot camp.
So I truly hope you find both these articles just as useful.
What is stress?
Stress is a part of life. In its purest form it’s a survival response (fight, flight or freeze) that is neither a good nor bad thing. It simply is. And yes, stress can also be useful, providing a physical or mental stimulus for adaptation.
But today, it's not often that we get or need it in its purest form. The stress we refer to now is often chronic stress, that can be seen as a cry for help from the body, in response to too much pressure for too long.
What we need to remember is for every action, there must be an equal and opposite reaction in order to maintain equilibrium. The cry for help that you are hearing from your body is often a humble request for an eye in the storm.
Stress itself, is chaos. Heart-rate is elevating, mind is racing, emotions are rolling, and on many levels we have a sense of being out of control.
So…what can we do?
The key to successful stress management is two steps. The first is in learning how to hear what your body is asking for, the second in finding a way to deliver what it wants and needs.
As stress is often largely unavoidable, when we shift our intention to restoring balance rather than destroying the chaos; the effects of stress are therefore not felt so strongly, thus minimising it’s damage.
Thank you Muscle Nerds as always for your inspiration, knowledge and education - I remain forever in awe!!!