Stress is an intimate part of our lives today — there’s no getting around it.
Stress in and of itself is not bad. Stress is to the human condition what tension is to the violin string: too little and the music is dull and raspy; too much and the music is shrill or the string snaps. Excess stress is blamed for many serious physical illnesses ranging from heart disease, early aging, and even Alzheimer’s disease.
Myth: No symptoms = no stress.
An absence of symptoms does not mean the absence of stress. In fact, camouflaging symptoms with medications could deprive you of the signals you need to reducing the strain on your body and mind.
Many of us experience symptoms of stress in a very physical way, even though stress is a psychological effect. Feeling anxious, shortness of breath, or simply feeling run down all the time can all be physical signs of stress. Feeling overwhelmed, disorganized and having difficulty concentrating are common mental signs of stress.
Myth: Only major symptoms of stress require attention.
This myth assumes that the minor symptoms of stress, like headaches or stomach acid, may be safely ignored. But these minor symptoms of stress are actually early warning signs that your life is getting out of hand, and that you need to do a better job of managing stress.
Myth: Stress is just all in your head.
Stress is NOT just imagination – it is what happens to you, it is a psychophysical reaction that occurs in your brain. The resulting chemical and hormonal changes then affect every single organ of your body.
– Forty-three percent of all adults suffer adverse health effects from stress.
– 75 to 90 percent of all physician office visits are for stress-related ailments and complaints.
– Stress is linked to the six leading causes of death–heart disease, cancer, lung ailments, accidents, cirrhosis of the liver, and suicide.
A STRESS TEST
Are you moving toward dangerous levels of stress? Here’s a short self-test to help you answer that question:
Just answer each of the following questions with a True or False
1. I often have migraine, tension or painful headaches.
2. I have not taken any time off in a long time.
3. I am often concerned about financial issues.
4. I have too little time with my friends and things I enjoy.
5. I often have a hard time going to sleep, and cannot shut off my mind.
6. I often feel distracted and forget what I was doing.
7. I seem to be losing or gaining weight.
8. I have chronic, ongoing pain.
9. I feel like my life has no purpose.
10. I never seem to reach my goals or achieve my dreams.
11. I often skip meals because I am too busy.
12. I don’t have any family or friends to turn to.
13. I don’t exercise or walk regularly.
14. I take medication for depression or anxiety.
15. My intimate life is not satisfying, or I have performance issues.
Count the number of True’s, and assign one point for each.
Here’s how to assess your stress level:
(a) Less than 5 points: Well managed low stress level.
(b) 5 – 6 points: Moderate stress.
(c) 7-9 points: High stress levels.
(d) 10 – 15 points: An exceptionally high level of stress.
Here’s a way to instantly manage any level of stress=> Instant Stress Reduction
Disclaimer: This information is educational only. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Consult your medical professional if you have concerns about your stress symptoms.
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Posted by Jill Ammon-Wexler