“I am so stressed.” It’s a sentence you hear a lot in general conversation and probably a sentence you yourself often say. Stress is one of the biggest issues in modern life, as it seems that the more advanced we become, the harder it gets. We live in a world of instant gratification, and instead of people being LESS stressed for it, it’s had the opposite effect. We can access services and products at the click of a button. We can have anything we desire delivered to our door. Technology has evolved as far as driverless cars like this one and a twenty-four-hour access to the world via our smartphones and tablets.
This instant world we live in is actually causing more stress, more pressure and more demand instead of less. We have more debt and less money, more expenses and less wages, more of everything and we are always struggling to keep up. Shops are open for longer, we work longer hours and these longer hours are putting a strain on our bodies, causing us to be stressed. Stress is ruining our lives. For every miraculous medical advancement, there is a new illness to be fixed. Stress leads to a rise in cortisol and this can eventually lead to the development of chronic – and sometimes deadly – illnesses. With a weaker immune system, you are more susceptible to colds, flu, high blood pressure and concerns with the thyroid. Hypothyroidism can be caused by blood sugar imbalances, which lead on from stress. Stress can cause a breakdown in mental health, which then leads onto depression and anxiety. It’s not pretty, and it’s not something we can cope with long term.
Our bodies were not built for a lot of stress. Sure, we adapt when we must into a stressful situation, but most of the time we work hard to stay healthy and calm. If your job is the cause of your stress because of pressure or long hours, you have to ask yourself whether it’s worth the salary you’re bringing home. If your job is the cause of mental health issues or stress that has physically manifested, then it is going to be detrimental to your health long-term. Relationships both personal and professional need to be beneficial to your health for you to stay in good health.
Practicing breathing techniques, cognitive therapies and calming exercises can help you burn any stress you are experiencing. Stress not only affects you mentally and physically, but it leeches into your relationships and your life. The way you present yourself will change, your demeanor can change and your active social life can disintegrate. Rather than live life allowing stress to affect you, you should live your life in a way that minimizes stress. Leaving a situation that causes you ill health doesn’t mean that you are weak, or cannot handle it. It means you make a conscious decision not to handle it – to walk away for your own health and well-being. And that decision can end up saving your life.