How to unleash your body’s full potential
Would you like to make stress your friend instead of your enemy?
Stress is everywhere you look. We live in a fast-paced world where technology keeps us connected 24-7. Additionally, our diets and self-care are often the first things to take a back seat to our never-ending To-Do lists.
Even when we are trying to make healthy choices, the odds aren’t stacked in our favor. The standard American diet is full of empty calories and void of any real nutrients. Air and water quality is poor and toxins are all around us. It seems like our list of stressors is neverending.
Experts agree that 95% of all diseases are stress induced!
What can we do about it?
Stress becomes our enemy when we allow it to become imbalanced. Our bodies can become depleted and overwhelmed by constant stressors. The danger is that this often occurs silently behind the scenes. You can’t judge the cumulative effects that stress is causing by your symptoms alone. The reason for this is that the body is always adapting. In fact, your body can compensate for high levels of stress for long periods of time until it can’t. This is often described as the straw that broke the camel’s back.
If you missed all the subtle warning signs along the way, your body will no longer whisper to get your attention. It will resort to shouting, refusing to perform, and other alarms get your attention.
This scenario usually plays out as some kind of health crisis. The crisis then sidelines you from your day-to-day life. It requires time and money to fix, leading to more stress and taking you full circle back to your old ways.
The good news is that busy people can be healthy too! The key is making sure that you are better equipped to thrive rather than survive. We can do this through self-awareness and self-care.
So what can you do right now to reduce the negative health effects of stress?
--Create a change in our thinking. We have a societal norm of waiting until something breaks before we try to do something about it. People are beginning to see the value in a prevention-oriented healthcare model. Afterall, you only get one body for an entire lifetime. Prevention may include alternative medicine, mind-body practices and self-help materials.
--Start with small incremental changes to your diet. Every positive change that you make will yield cumulative improvements to your health. You don’t have to change everything at once. Start with “bite-sized” small steps that build your energy and confidence.
--Schedule down-time. If it is on your calendar, it is more likely to happen. You plan for everything else, so make a plan to recharge your batteries. By scheduling activities of rest, you are more likely to enjoy them when the time arrives. Yoga, meditation, nature walks, or a gratitude practice is a great place to start.
--Exercise is an important routine to burn off stress hormones but an act of balance is important. Your exercise should leave you feeling energized and recharged rather than depleted.
The biggest gift of implementing a self-care routine is self-awareness. In time, you will reign victorious over stress and will learn to make it work for you rather than against you. It is possible to achieve more peace, improved vitality and enhanced performance. Small shifts in your spending behaviors and prioritizing your self-care means that preventative healthcare is within reach.