If you have ever met me in person then it’s safe to say you know how relaxed I am. Some people might say I talk slow and or act reserved. Some people might think it comes of snooty or as if I don’t care about the situation. The truth is, one of the biggest lessons I have learned in life is how stress works. I remember my mother telling me when I was about 18 that she is having too much stress and can’t help me or just was not feeling good from it. My response always was that same; stress is not real MOM, it’s just an excuse for people that can’t handle their life. Of course she would get mad and probably feel more stress. It wasn’t long after I realized what stress was and how important it is for everyone. Needless to say I apologized to my mother. The first thing I learned about stress is without a doubt it has major physical ramifications. Just because we can’t see it effecting us doesn’t mean it is not real and that the effect is not detrimental.
In fact the more I study stress the more I have learned that it could be the single most effective health killer that the world has today. I mean every person and animal for that matter, has stress. There are lots of things that kill your health faster, but none effect everyone as much as stress. If I had to guess some that are close, maybe food, personal perception, genetics, or water.
I just read a new article that cements in even more the importance of managing stress well.
According to this article released in July 2013, your risk of heart attack could be double if you have high stress.
French researchers published important new information Wednesday in the European Heart Journal. This showed that people who believe that they are stressed, and that the stress is affecting their health, have more than twice the risk of heart attack as those who don’t feel that way.
“This indicates that individuals’ perception and reality seem to be connected pretty well,” lead author Herman Nabi, of the French National Institute of Health and Medical Research, told Yahoo! Shine in an email. “In other words, people seem to be aware when stress is affecting their health.”
The researchers analyzed the data of 7,268 men and women from a previous study, the British Whitehall II cohort, based on a questionnaire that asked the following: “To what extent do you consider the stress or pressure that you have experienced in your life has an effect on your health?” Participants chose from answers including “not at all,” “a little,” “moderately,” “a lot,” and “extremely.” They were also asked to rate their stress levels and other factors, including smoking, alcohol intake, diet, exercise and preexisting health conditions such as diabetes.
People who answered the first question with “a lot” or “extremely” had a 2.12 times higher risk of having or dying from a heart attack compared with those who didn’t think stress was affecting their health.
“Our ultimate goal in this research was to demonstrate [the idea that] individuals’ perception of [how] stress impacts their own health is valid, and should be considered both in future research and in clinical settings,” Nabi said. “We wanted also to show that responses to stress differ greatly between individuals. In fact, a situation that is stressful for one person might not be stressful for another.”
We’ve known for a long time, to quote the Greek philosopher Epictetus, that “men are disturbed not by things, but by the view which they take of them”.
You can show definitively that people have a higher rate of heart attack if they feel they have too many demands on them at work or in life, whether it’s true or not. So if you perceive something, it’s as good as the real thing.
People should just keep in mind that finding an effective way to reduce stress may take some time. Things that are very distressing for some might be pleasurable for others, like a steep rollercoaster ride. So there is nothing that’s a panacea. Running, doing yoga or listening to music might work for some but be dull, boring and stressful for others.
The most universal distressing tools are to just relax, maybe form simple routines, take things a little slower, and for gods sake it’s o.k. to just lay around sometimes!
Good luck and god speed to your Health!
Any questions or comments? Feel free to comment below.
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