AGHHH! I'm so stressed!!!!
These days I seem to be busier than ever. I run a successful healing business, I am a Mum of 2; aged 10 and 12, a wife to a dynamic business man and a pretend Mum to a beautiful Labrador. Life can be challenging to say the least with client work, home schooling and general house hold necessities and I know I'm not alone when I say that life is a constant juggling act. Learning to keep my head above the water has always been my goal and just getting through each day is a win- remember that! But throughout my work recently I have noticed an increasing amounts of stress in my clients, so what is it and what can we do about it?
If you've read any of my other blogs you'll know I like to know the science behind the body's response to things, how things work.
So for those of you who don't know, or learnt this such a long time ago need a brush up here is a quick lesson about our amazing network of nerves which run all over our body. We have a huge nerve running from our brain connecting to our facial nerves, down our back and connecting to all our major organs. It's called the Vagus Nerve. It's like the main motorway of the body and information is passed from organ to brain and brain to organ.
This also means that our brain can affect each organ all at the same time if it needs to. How amazing is that? Like one massive STOP sign! It can shut things down if we are in danger or under threat and reboot them when out of danger... or that is what is meant to happen, but due to our lifestyles these days our bodies are glitching.
Thousands of years ago this shut-down came in rather handy when a ferocious animal squared up to us and was about to kill us (gulp!).
At the top of our spine in the base of our brain is our amygdala. It assesses danger, if it thinks that there is a threat or potential threat, it sends a message via the Vagus Nerve to all of the organs that are just pootling about digesting, resting, healing. It shuts them down so the body's day-to-day functions are put on hold- like digesting the delicious nuts and berries breakfast or processing waste, healing a wound etc.
The "fight or flight" response (know as the sympathetic nervous system) is switched on. This increases our heart rate and our blood pressure
(so that blood can pump to our toes quickly and we can run away from the threat) . Yup, handy in those days. Then when we escaped the threat and we were back in the hut or cave our brain would push the switch back to "off" (known as the parasympathetic nervous system) and the body could continue resting, digesting and healing.
This was useful back then but these days we aren't under attack from a bear, well most people aren't, but our bodies have not evolved any further than this response when there is a perceived threat. Our perceived threats are things like having a deadline at work, or an argument with a partner or a near miss in the car-our body responds in the same way. Our problem these days is that we have so many "threats" that our body is on the fight or flight mode far too often and they just pile on top of each other and our body remains in this fight or flight pattern.
What happens then? We become exhausted and irritable and we can't sleep. Our adrenals become exhausted too (using up our B vitamins and magnesium) and our hearts race, we become anxious and get panic attacks..... any of this sounding familiar??
How do we turn the switch to off?
There are so many options but firstly try not to get into the anxious exhausted state in the first place. If you find yourself there though my recommendations firstly are:
Take some time out for you each day. Even if its 10 mins twice a day. Put your phone on silent, close the door to the room you are in a slow your breathing down. If you can meditate then do. If you never have before it's so beneficial. But essentially, just rest and enjoy the peace of the room you are in.
Be aware of the food you eat. Sounds really basic but what you put in really does affect how well you perform.
If you are stressed take time before a meal to slow your breathing down and press the reset button so that you absorb all the nutrients on your plate!
Exercise is a great way to increase endorphins, the feel good goodies that whizz around the body- they increases our immunity and exercise tires us out.
Take phones and devises out of the bedroom!!! I cannot stress this enough. Phones continues to send out waves whilst we sleep (or don't sleep!), Research has shown that they affect deep down into our cells, right down to the mitochondria, so when your body is resting at night, let it rest.
Many of my clients see me because they are stressed, have panic attacks or are worriers- when my clients visit me I find out what will specifically help from an energetic perspective. After all, we are just energy ourselves- using sound, colour, energetic healing (Reiki, Tibetan), EFT and Mattrix re-imprinting, Acupressure as well as many other techniques. We are all different so each session varies for each person.
If we can control how we respond to our stressors by looking after ourselves then the chaos of life is much easier to cope with.