Whenever there is change happening, there will be some level of confusion. This confusion can lead to stress. Stress also results from a lack of living in the present moment. When we feel stress or anxiety, we are often stuck in thinking about what could have been (the past) or what might be (the future). A constant state of this way of thinking can be crippling.
The thing to remember is that life is happening right here and now. It doesn’t serve anyone to focus on “what-if’s” but instead focus on what IS: what can you right now to make this very moment better? When put to practice, this has a cascading effect of positivity and clarity. Having been prone to anxiety in the past for many years, I can speak from personal experience on this.
Learning how to handle stress in the moment will be the best gift you ever give to yourself. It is important to know that the body heals when the Autonomic Nervous System shifts into Parasympathetic mode. In English, that means that the body heals when it is calm & when it is able to rest and repair. For this reason, increasing awareness around stress triggers and handling stress in the moment are essential. Putting it to the back of your mind or “dealing with it later” is not effective and will make the processing/expression of stress that much worse later.
The body is a flow system. It is designed to receive, process, and let go, and it must be able to do so in order to heal. This applies to food as much as it applies to experiences, especially those that can cause a more dramatic and damaging stress response.
Here are a few more fun facts about how stress affects the body provided by the HeartMath Institute:
1. Stress is recognized as the #1 proxy killer disease today. The American Medical Association has noted that stress is the basic cause of more than 60% of all human disease.
2. YOUR BODY DOES NOT DISCRIMINATE BETWEEN BIG STRESS OR LITTLE STRESS. A typical stress reaction, experienced dozens of times per day per individual, begins with a cascade of 1400 biochemical events in your body. If these reactions are left unchecked, we experience premature aging, impairment of cognitive function, drain in energy, and inhibited effectiveness & clarity.
3. We can control how we respond to stress. “We don’t need to be victims to our own emotions, thoughts, and attitudes. We can control how we respond to stress and we can become more sensitive to stressful situations and how they are affecting us before it manifests as physical, mental, or emotional complaint. There are simple, scientifically validated solutions to stress that empower people to rewire their own stress response.
4. The best way to manage stress is to deal with it the very moment you feel it come up. Millions of Americans unsuccessfully us the binge-and-purge approach when it comes to stress. They stress out all day, believing that they can wait until later to recover when they go to an evening yoga class, go to the gym, or chill out when they take the weekend off. Unfortunately, when we put off going for our own inner balance our bodies have already activated the stress response and it’s our health that suffers.”
For more information on how to handle stress in the given moment, talk to your practitioner here at The Spring. We can help. You can also check out literature from where we referenced this article on the HeartMath Institute‘s website for further information on how handling stress in the moment benefits overall health.
Written by Laura Bautista, Certified Holistic Health Coach