You’ve likely heard this before – some stress is good – it gets us up in the morning to work on time, it nags us to do our homework to reach our goals, and cajoles us to choose studying for an exam over another Netflix episode of – insert your latest crush title here. It elbows us to save for retirement over splurging on a new pair of Choo’s, and it gets us to cut the grass before it gets so long we’ll have to do it twice to finish.
Like any relationship though, it’s best to read the signs along the way, and to address chronic, underlying issues before they show up sideways. We usually can see these sideways signs in our life before we recognize them in our bodies. Having lots of accidents lately? Avoiding opening the credit card statement? Misplacing the overdue medical bills month after month? Getting snippy with your loved ones for no reason – or worse – for really little things like the way they put away the dishes?
Whether or not these things ring a bell – how about the physical symptoms that get overlooked…..like irritable bowel syndrome, shallow breathing, dizziness, poor sleep, repeated broken toes, or heart palpitations when you think of….- insert your current relationship struggle? The first step is to recognize the signs in your body when stress is going overboard before these more severe symptoms begin yelling at you to pay attention, before you get into a vicious stress cycle that’s difficult to break. The image below is borrowed from my friends, Drs. Michele & Mark Sherwood, from the Functional Medicine Institute in Tulsa who work tirelessly to provide tools for your wellness. Check out their work!
All that said – the way to break-up with stress is to activate the relaxation response, the feel good physiological processes that crowd stress out. Take one minute now, close your eyes and simply feel your breath – in and out, up and down, just sense yourself and listen. Begin to awaken to how you FEEL, right now. If you do this today, and again tomorrow, just for a few minutes, you can change your life, break-up with stress for good, and even better, make stress a friend rather than a toxic enemy. For more tips, tools, or to have a session in-person or remotely, drop a line here at my private practice. We’ll get in touch and work on that break-up for good.