The Warning Signs of Stress
Chronic stress disrupts nearly every system in your body. It can suppress your immune system, upset your digestive and reproductive systems, increase the risk of heart attack and stroke, and speed up the aging process. According to the Center for Disease Control/National Institute on Occupational Safety & Health, the workplace is the number one cause of life stress. The CDC reports 110 million people die every year as a direct result of stress. That is seven people every 2 seconds.
Sources of Stress
The workplace is where it’s at. Your boss dumps a last-minute presentation on you. You feel annoyed, but confident that you can handle it. An hour later the phone rings and it’s day care calling to say your daughter is sick and you need to pick her up now. Then more bad news continues to interrupt your day, one that you thought would be problem-free. That crankiness you feel, that headache, that tension in your neck and that desire to devour a box of chocolates — that’s you feeling stressed. It’s also your body sending out a call for help. Your body is speaking to you.
Stress is your body’s natural reaction to any kind of demand that disrupts life as usual. Your body is designed to keep you safe by sending the stress hormone, cortisol into your cells to allow you to react accordingly to the situation. When cortisol is present, the blood flows out of the frontal cortex of your brain and into your extremities so that you can run away or stand and fight; your built-in Fight or Flight Response. It’s the way human beings are wired.
Good vs. Bad Stress
In small doses, stress is good such as when it helps you conquer small fears or gives you extra endurance and motivation to get something done. What makes this good is that you’ve utilized cortisol in a positive way and dealt with the situation. You’ve burned it as fuel to accomplish your goal. But there’s also bad stress, which is often caused by worries such as lack of money, your job, relationship or health, whether it be sudden and short or long-lasting. These are the stresses that we stuff down into our bodies and carry for many years. Feeling stress for too long sets off your body’s warning system of physical and emotional symptoms.
Stress Warning Signs
Your body’s stress warning signs tell you that something isn’t right. Much like the glowing orange, “check engine” light on your car’s dashboard, if you neglect the alerts sent out by your body, you could have a major engine malfunction. Stress that is left unchecked or poorly managed is known to contribute to high blood pressure, heart disease, obesity, diabetes and suicide.
When things aren’t going your way, or you feel like you are losing control or are overwhelmed, pay attention to the warning signs listed below. These are just some of the ways that your body is telling you it needs attention and extra care:
- Headaches, muscle tension, neck or back pain
- Upset stomach
- Dry mouth
- Chest pains, rapid heartbeat
- Difficulty falling or staying asleep
- Loss of appetite or overeating “comfort foods”
- Increased frequency of colds
- Lack of concentration or focus
- Memory problems or forgetfulness
- Short temper
- Everyone reacts to stress differently based on the sum total of negative energy that they’ve stuffed down into their bodies, and each body sends out its different set of red flags. You may not even feel the physical or emotional warning signs until hours or days of stressful activities. When you do notice a stiff back or that you’re snapping at your friends, pay attention to the signs and listen to what your body is telling you. While the adrenaline rush after acing that presentation to the board is something to enjoy, the warning signs of stress are not anything to take lightly or ignore.
Managing Stress with EFT
By noticing how you respond to stress, you can manage it in a healthy way by using the gentle technique of EFT Tapping. Stress has become a part of our daily lives but it doesn’t have to control you. EFT Tapping is a simple technique that you can learn easily. Empower yourself to control your stress whenever you need to. You are the only person who knows how you feel. Make it a practice to tune into your body every day and identify your feelings. These are the feelings that are likely causing your stress. EFT Tapping can clear those feelings.
Hear from a current client:
“I felt instantly comfortable with Karen! During my first session, we worked deeply releasing energy from old traumas of not feeling supported, which had been triggered by a concussion four years ago. Karen’s insightful, wise and caring manner gently guided me through this profound healing. I felt amazing results during the initial session and returned for three more sessions to focus on old beliefs, blocked energy and thought patterns which were no longer serving me. I have been using tapping consistently and feel more anchored and empowered than ever. So grateful for this precious gift!”
~ Susan. Bath, ME
Karen St.Clair, AAMET Certified EFT Practitioner is a highly skilled professional with a true gift for facilitating her clients’ life-changing outcomes. She specializes in EFT Tapping and is the founder of Reiki Tap Renewal, a modality that combines the energy psychology of EFT and the healing energy of Reiki. Book an appointment today at Touch Point Studio or via Facetime or Zoom video conferencing: 207-878-8315