So what is stress?
There are chronic stressors and acute or sudden stressors. Here is a list of chronic stressors and I’m sure if you think about it, you could come up with more. Lack of adequate sleep, Hormone Imbalance, Personal Illness, Chronic Pain, Toxin exposure, Poor nutrition, Excessive caffeine, Excessive exercise, Excessive alcohol, physical, mental or verbal abuse. Cigarette smoking, chronic Inflammation, Financial pressures. Loss or illness of a loved one, Pet illness or loss of a pet, Lack of relaxation, Negative Attitude and Beliefs, some Prescription Drugs, Chronic Deadlines, and Chronic Guilt.
And there are acute stressors too, like Acute Fear anger, anxiety, guild, embarrassment and acute deadlines that you have to meet. An acute event that appears dangerous. And for some people, public Speaking, Performance evaluations, Clinical appointments, Traffic, moving from one home to another can cause acute stress.
It’s important to recognize that it sometimes isn’t the actual event that brings on the stress. Instead it is the Perception of the particular Stress that is really key. Just last night at 1 am I’m discussing this with my nurse. I felt that my perception was screwed up about something and I needed to let it go because it was hurting me the way I was perceiving the situation. So perception is key here, and perception can be based on several factors.
One, it can be based on how new it is to you. If it is a new stressor, it will be harder to deal with. If it was unpredictable, it is a lot more stressful. If the stress is a threat to you or your ego, it is going to be a worse stressor. If the stress makes you feel you have lost control, it is going to be a stressor. And this is what happened to me late last night. I felt I had lost control. And the ACUTE stress will be perceived at different amounts based on your overall current level of stressors that are going on in your life in general. If you are well rested, hopeful and grateful, an acute stressor will be less difficult to handle than if you are tired, lost and can’t see the forest through the trees. Right?
After all, things aren’t as simple as they used to be!
So there are many ways to decrease stress. Hobbies like gardening, painting, exercise, yoga, meditating, enjoying music or just nature, and praying. These are all common things we know and many times forget are so easy for us to do. Here are some ore very easy things to do to lower your stress levels.
Many times we’re hardest on the people we love most. And we are because we feel safest with them. The safer you feel with someone, the harder you are on them. The more you love someone, the harder you are on them. So, we need to make a real effort to try hard to keep the perspective that the people we love most should have MOST of our patience and understanding. I know that’s hard. It’s hard for me. But, every time you catch yourself not following this very stress relieving practice. Immediately work to change it.
– Positive Energy
Be super careful about what you watch and listen to on the television and radio. There is so much negative stuff out there. Try to stay away from negative people, negative news, radio and e-mails. And if you notice yourself feeling badly, think about what you were just doing, listening to, or involved in and try to make a connection with a pattern. And stay away from that negative energy the best you can in the future.
Keep a clear conscious. I probably do this too much. Sometimes I will hurt myself because my conscience says I need to do something for someone else. And I bet, since I’m sitting with a bunch of amazing women right now, a lot of you know exactly what I’m talking about. So keep a clear conscious and do what you know is right. But know that you have limitations.
Keep a sense of humor. You really need to do this. I’m really good at this. I’m pretty much not offended by anything. And I probably think like a 5 year old. But it really helps me. I laugh at just about anything stupid. So does my dad and he’s almost 96 years old. I think it can carry you a long way.
And of course – give all you can. Give, give, give. The more you give the more you get in return. The universe just works that way.
And when you are really just given out – and you have no more to give… there is one thing you can do that is actually a gift to someone else AND give you back something you really need and feeds you what you really need – and that is a hug. Just find someone that looks like they need a hug, and hug them. I’m not kidding. It works every time.
OK, now let’s move into some reality awakening. NO hugging, mushiness and all that other girly stuff. Let’s put our big girl Testosterone panties on now and talk about what most men find very easy to do, and we really don’t do well at all.
And that is black and white decision making. Women are generally colorful beings that look at every detail of something whereas men are pretty black and white, straight forward thinkers. This is something we need to do and learn from guys on many occasions, especially when a stressful issue is lurking around the corner or we’re in the middle of a stressful issue.
There are 3 ways to deal with a stressful situation.
It’s black and white. Number one, You can LEAVE the stressful situation. Number two, you can CHANGE the situation. And number three, you can ADJUST to the situation. That’s it. Leave, change it or adjust to it. Most of the time we can’t leave the situation. Or we don’t WANT to leave the situation. If that’s the case. Recognize it. Other times, just thinking about it will make you realize that leaving the situation is actually the best thing to do! If you can’t leave it, or don’t want to leave it, maybe you can change the situation. Maybe you can do something, or suggest something that will actually make a change for the better and then the situation resolves or becomes better. But if there is absolutely nothing that you can do to change the situation, or suggest to change the situation, then maybe you just need to adjust to the situation.
Just think of these 3 things before you give up on something. Is the situation bad enough or not worth your time to Leave? Or do you need to get rid of something or someone from your life? If not, then is there something that you can do to change the situation to make it better? If not, then how can you adjust your own self, your own perception to deal with the situation. That’s what you need to do.
The path that you take isn’t likely going to be exactly straight forward. But if you keep these 3 things in your head, you’ll get there!
Now remember when I said that stress will cause your DHEA to decrease. If your stress level acutely rises, your cortisol will rise and when this happens, you see what happens to your DHEA. It decreases!
If your stress level continues to be chronically elevated, your DHEA AND Cortisol AND Pregnenolone will decrease.
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