Muscles are weird, depending on how you look at it. If you don’t use them, they shrink in a process called atrophy. However, if we stress them, they get damaged and have to do some damage control, during that process, they rebuild stronger than before: that’s how they grow. It, therefore, means we need to give our muscles a hard time to maintain them, but who does that except sports enthusiasts?
Our entire human body operates as a system, so muscles aren’t unique. If we apply that same principle to everything else, a lot of things that we have been doing has just been plain wrong. We have discussed stress here before, in the post Overcoming Stress, and we concluded that stress is good for us, we need stress to keep our hearts and minds healthy. Unfortunately, we also avoid it at all costs, the way many people avoid exercise and get sick.
According to an article published by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) entitled, “5 Things You Should Know About Stress,” contrary to what we may think, we cannot avoid stress, but not all stress is bad. Just living our daily lives, having relationships, having jobs and raising children produce stress. However, long-time exposure to traumatic stress can have serious health implications.
Stress is good for us, we need stress to keep our hearts and minds healthy. Unfortunately, we also avoid it at all costs, the way many people avoid exercise and get sick…
The important thing is to identify when our body is struggling with the stress we face. Symptoms include low energy, insomnia, substance abuse – like alcohol or when your temper starts to become unnaturally short. When this happens, contacts your doctor and practice some stress-reducing activities, even 30 minutes of walking per day can make a significant difference. Other things they recommend include regular exercise and activities that cause you to relax, like stretching and yoga.
The most important thing is to identify problematic stress and start to set goals and priorities, we need to identify when we are just doing too much. Identify what is urgent and what is important; some things are urgent but not important, some are very important but not urgent. Stepping back and looking at what we have to do in this way can make a great difference.
Most importantly, don’t try to do it alone, having people who help you diffuse the stress, and a place where you can relax is important. So maybe being stressed doesn’t have to be so bad, does it?