April is stress awareness month, and in honor of stress awareness I thought I'd discuss the topic of Stress. According to Dictionary.com stress is a state of mental or emotional strain or suspense. Stress has the ability to affect our physical health due to the action of vasoconstriction, this is when the blood vessels constrict and slows the speed of blood flow. Vasoconstriction can be slight or severe, in severe cases people can experience a Cerebral Vascular Accident or Stroke. All stress is not bad though, Eustress challenges us to grow, adapt, and find creative solutions in our lives.
Distress is the negative effects of stress that deplete or even destroy life energy.
Relax fast; relieve stress quickly when you are feeling overwhelmed and don't have a lot of time for a break. Take a few deep breaths, step outside for a quick walk, or spend a few minutes stretching. Reach for fruits and veggies, or unsalted nuts if you're stressed and feel the need to bite into something. Too often people eat sugary items when they're under pressure, which can lead to weight gain.
Ideally, stress in our lives should be just high enough to motivate us to satisfy our needs and not so high that it interferes with our ability to reach our full potential.
While stress itself might not kill us, it undermines our ability to stay well.