Life in our society moves at a frenetic pace. Change is constant; not only small changes but life-altering, stressful ones such as relocation, layoffs, divorce, and caring for aging parents.
Along with continual change comes endless stress. Although it may ebb and flow, stress becomes your constant companion; your shadow. Over time, stress will wear away at your health and well-being like a torrent of water eroding a rock.
Let’s take a look at the specific dangers posed by chronic stress.
The Dangers Of Chronic Stress
While you’re likely aware of the toll that stress can take, what you may not know is that…
75–90% of all doctor visits are due to stress-related ailments.
If you’re as shocked by that statistic as I was, read on – there’s a reason the percentage is so high.
First, your thoughts or emotions cause your body to mistake any stress as highly threatening to your livelihood, thus striking at your ability to provide food and other basic life necessities for yourself and those you love.
And if you’re familiar with Maslow’s Hierarchy, you know that physiological necessities such as food, water, and shelter are considered basic human needs that must be fulfilled before you can attend to your higher needs such as safety, love and belonging, or prestige and feelings of accomplishment.
If your body constantly receives messages that your basic survival is at stake, day after day, it will begin to break down under the stress, causing a plethora of ailments such as high blood pressure, heart disease, asthma, and obesity.
Next, how stress impacts you depends on aspects that include:
- Your personality
- Your current life situation
- Your physical health
- The quality of your relationships
- The amount of commitments and responsibilities you bear
- Your views of others and what you perceive that they expect from you
- The number of traumatic events you’ve experienced
When stress continues unabated, it takes an exponential toll on your health. Not only does stress slow down or even pause your body’s own healing process, more health issues are likely to occur – sending you on more emergency room visits.
As well, looking back on my own life, I see now that the formula that pushed me into burnout was my Type-A personality (#1 above) added to my commitments and responsibilities (#5), along with the high expectations I placed on myself because of what I perceived others expected from me (#6). And I’m not alone; many women – perhaps even you – experience these same pressures and are burned out because of this.
So what’s the solution?
How To Minimize Stress and Maximize Calm in 10 Minutes a Day
After I succumbed to full-on burnout several years ago, I realized the practice of mindfulness — and specifically somatic experiencing (the mindfulness of the body) — was a key to healing myself. But I had alienated my body and so too, my soul, by ignoring the messages they were sending me, and was in dire need of an intervention.
When we’re stressed, we usually give up our self-care practices that keep us happy and healthy. Yet it’s these practices we abandon that keep our stress levels from overwhelming us. They support us to be more resilient in the face of chronic stress.
When I accepted that I was in full-blown burnout, I knew I had to realign with my body-spirit and recommit to listening to and loving myself. That’s why I created my own self-care practice based on mindfulness of the body, to help me connect with my body-spirit and tap into peace.
I call it my From Burnout To Balance: A Simple 10-Minute Daily Self-Care Practice, and it’s been shown to:
- Increase mindfulness, well-being, self-confidence, and personal power
- Increase your ability to concentrate
- Cultivate a greater resilience to stress, a positive mindset, and a sense of hopefulness and calm
- Decrease stress and stress-related symptoms like frustration, mood swings, feelings of overwhelm or lack of control, anxiety, depression, low energy, headaches, body aches and pains, muscle tension, chest pain and rapid heartbeat, insomnia, and frequent colds and infections
- Reduce or even stop worrying
When I started this practice, I began to receive messages from my body. Even though I had forgotten that I could talk to my body and get responses! This was very comforting to me. Instead of being just a physical body, I was reminded that there is a Universal Intelligence within.
Doing this practice for 10–20 minutes each day not only helped lessen the numbness that had set it, but also calmed me. As the days went by, my fortitude grew and I began to feel hopeful and inspired again.
The act of giving myself the care I deserved, of being kind to myself, restored my connection with my body and my faith in myself. And by choosing to include my body in my choices, I was able to restore my body’s faith in me. All this has been essential to helping me heal from chronic stress and burnout.
Sounds good right? And I want to gift this to you!
Instead of pushing past all your stress signs, or trying to browbeat your stress symptoms into submission, you can use this practice to begin to create more communion with your body, restore a sense of trust, and ultimately, heal yourself. Sign up here to receive your gift of my From Burnout To Balance: A Simple 10-Minute Daily Self-Care Practice.
I know from experience how valuable this daily self-care practice is. Just ten minutes a day will help you heal from the effects of chronic stress.
You’ll feel more energetic, optimistic, and cheerful. Even if your life situation hasn’t changed much, you will have taken back your power to create a positive mindset and to choose a sense of hopefulness instead of feeling buffeted by the ever-blowing winds of change.
And if you desire ongoing support and nurturing from me, you’ve got it! Sign up for my email list to receive regular tips and strategies to free you from the toxic effects of chronic stress and burnout. I’m here for you. Let’s get your well-being back.