You must learn to let go. Release the stress. You were never in control anyway.– Steve Maraboli
“I am so stressed!” A phrase that is used constantly by ourselves or someone that we know. From the moment we wake up, it is a constant struggle to get the kids ready for school in time, getting dressed to be able to face the traffic to get to work, deal with meetings, hostile individuals, deadlines, find time to eat and this is all before 1:00 pm. 1:00 pm to 6:00 pm feels like a whole week and when we look at the clock to see if it is time to go home yet, only 10 minutes have passed. Finally, 6:00 pm comes along and it is time to go get the children. We get home by 7:00 pm just to finish whatever homework we have left over for the kids; make dinner; do a load of laundry because it is after all a never ending story; clean up the kitchen and get to bed because we are exhausted….Only to start the next day and deal with the same things all over again!
When we talk about stress, we assume that stress is a bad thing. Even though too much stress can cause physical and psychological symptoms, stress is NOT a bad thing. Stress is basically the way that your body adjusts to different physical, psychological or emotional forces around you. Your body adjusts your heart rate, hormones and other bodily functions to be able to survive. For example, the mother that was able to lift a car up in order to save her child was able to do that because her body adjusted to the stress of seeing her child in danger. In this instance, we can see how stress can actually be a good thing. The problem with stress is not the actual stressor, it is the way we cope with stress.
Some of us use food, drinking or smoking in order to deal with stress. Although these can temporarily make us forget about the stress we are going through, it will not bring the levels of cortisol (stress hormone) down. They will actually create more stress in the body. Finding effective coping mechanisms that work for us is essential to lowering the levels of cortisol in the body.
Some of the coping mechanisms that can be quite effective to manage stress include: Yoga, meditation, aromatherapy, exercise, massage therapy, and beauty therapy to name a few. One of the things that I would like to point out is that all of these coping mechanisms have something in common; all of them require that you make time for yourself!!!!
Making time for ourselves should not be viewed as a selfish thing. In fact, it is essential that we make ourselves a priority so that we can be better mothers/fathers, partners, wives/husbands, employees and friends. Even if you don’t have an hour, take 10-15 minutes to do something for YOURSELF. Please join me in this journey where you will learn how to control your stress and live a happier, more positive life.