The classic definition of stress is “any real or imagined threat, and your body’s response to it.”
Stress plays a major role in your immune system and can impact your blood pressure, cholesterol levels, brain chemistry, blood sugar levels and hormonal imbalance. Most importantly when your body is under the stress response, your cortisol (a stress hormone) and insulin (a sugar balancing hormone) levels rise. Look here for more information on PHYSICAL responses to stress.
The body’s response to stress is first and formost a feeling. Emotions are our guidance system. Our brain is wired to physically respond to feelings (eg to start producing stress hormones (cortisol) when you have a stressful feeling.) Cortisol gets you moving to cope with the stress (eg fight fight) but prolonged cortisol lowers the the immune system.
Fear, rage, worry, doubt, grief, despair, overwhelment, guilt, blame, insecurity, frustration, irritation, impatience and powerlessness are some emotions that we feel when we are under stress.
So whatever the real or imagined threat is, it is the feeling (the response) that is alerting the body that things aren’t ‘quite right’. And you need to change whatever is happening, to get the body out of that situation.
Threats could be caused by being chased by a polar bear (this is unlikely!) or hanging around people who make you feel ‘stressed’ and make you feel these emotions (highly likely!) .
If you feel ANY of these above feelings on a REGULAR basis, chances are your body is under stress.
You cannot physically or mentally heal when your body is under stress. Even if you are doing everything else ‘right’ e.g. diet, exercise etc.
If you continually feel those negative emotions (fear, rage, worry, doubt, grief, despair, overwhelment, guilt, blame, insecurity, frustration, irritation, impatience and powerlessness) you cannot heal.
Get these feelings out of your system now, so your body can get well! 🙂
Have a good week!