Whilst the word “Stress” is thrown around like candy, it has become a blanket term to cover a multitude of sins, without most people – health professionals included – really knowing much about it; certainly from a holistic perspective.
In fact, it is not difficult to understand. We are hard-wired to respond to stress otherwise we would not survive. We have deep-seated physiological responses to threats and dangers that help us confront, negotiate or avoid these situations. Once the danger has gone, we then settle down to a more relaxed state of being.
The problem is when we have no relief from the stress. Then our system kicks into the reserves of our adrenal glands and nervous systems to cope with its ongoing onslaught. And, if there is no ultimate relief, our body starts to break down and a plethora of problems, from heart attacks, to immune system diseases and even cancer then await us.
Of course, being human, what we want to do is rid ourselves of the stresses or stressors. But that doesn’t work; firstly because we usually can’t, and secondly because we need some stress… not only to survive, but to grow, mature and evolve as human beings.
Our attitude is very important. Standing by our values and beliefs is also very important. But this means looking for, examining and integrating what it is we belief in and value at a spiritual level.
Once we can do this we can then face stress with a certain amount of equinimity. And, guess what? Our bodies will respond accordingly and not be subject to the same degree or intensity of problems outlined above. And, furthermore, this is not just theoretical speculation it is backed by fact.
So, instead of trying to get rid of the stresses when you can’t – because all this does is create a combative attitude and… further stress. Maybe ask what the stress is for? What is it teaching us? How come it has visited us at this point in time? And how can we be a better person for it.