What Is Stress?

Today, stress has become commonplace in the lives of so many people that it is a way of life. What with the hassles, demands from all quarters and deadlines that you have to beat, modern life is full of situations that are very stressful. What you should know is it is possible to use this stress to help you cope even in times of pressure. The secret is to find a way for you to recognize when you are in stress. Then you have to come up with successful ways for you to reduce the harmful effects of stress. However, you can only do this if you happen to know what the signs, symptoms and effects of stress are. This will mean having knowledge of what stress is and what it can do to you.

How do you Define Stress?

The human body is very dynamic when it comes to the physical response. Stress is merely one way through which your body responds to objects or events that are not in balance with your whole-body system. These may be effects that make you feel threatened or upset you mentally, emotionally, physically and spiritually. These responses are automatic whether you really are in danger or not.

The reaction your body produces is often called the stress response, or you can also call it the “fight-or-fight” response. For the most part, it is usually a way for your body to protect you from harm. Fr a stress response that is functioning well, it is very effective at helping your stay focused on your work and life, gives you the energy you need and also keep you alert. It is for this reason why it is possible for stress to save you in case of an emergency. This is because it will most likely provide you with the strength to defend yourself. Stress has also been known to help individuals rise to a challenging occasion, keep you on your toes and sharpen your concentration when attempting to win in a game.

However, it may reach a point when your stress levels may work against you. It is possible for high and uncontrollable stress to ruin your mood, make you unproductive and even affect your relationships and way of life. It is at this point that you are said to be in need of help to assist you lower your stress levels. You can only get the right help if you know the root cause of your rise in stress levels.

What Are The Causes Of Stress?

Why can stress level be triggered to such a damaging state? For you to reach a point where you are stressed up to a level you cannot function there has to be factors that led you to that state. The elements that often lead to stress are called stressors. These could be situations or even pressures in your life. It is good to note that although stressors are known to be negative influences, there are also positive situations that can lead to this condition. In cases where your life put high demand on you, and you are forced to make adjustments then this can lead to a stressful condition. They could be everyday events such as preparing for a wedding, going to college or even working to get a promotion.

There are two main categories of stressors. These include the internal stressors and external stressors

Internal stressors:

  • Pessimism,
  • Negative self-talk,
  • Unrealistic expectations,
  • Perfectionism,
  • Lack of assertiveness,
  • Not able to accept uncertainty,
  • External stressors,
  • Work,
  • Financial problems,
  • Children and family,
  • Relationship difficulties,
  • Life changes.

What you should know about these causes is the fact that they are not one-size-fit-all causes. For this reason, what is stressful to you may not have the same effect on another individual. Therefore, as you search for the root cause of your stress, you will have to look into yourself and the situations around you that make you feel threatened or in danger. You can do this by studying how you react to certain events and the symptoms you exhibit in the process.

What Are The Symptoms Of Stress?

A good way for you to know that you have stress overload is to know some of the common symptoms that most people have when they are in such a state. These could be in the form of cognitive, emotional, physical or behavioral symptoms. Some of the symptoms that fall under these categories include:

  • Memory problem.
  • Having trouble concentrating.
  • Always being pessimistic.
  • Constantly being worried and over anxious.
  • Aggression.           
  • Irritable.
  • Feeling depresses and lonely.
  • Feeling overwhelmed.
  • Isolating you from others.
  • Eating more or less.
  • Using stimulants e.g. alcohol and drugs to relax.
  • Loss of sex drive.
  • Chest pain or rapid heartbeat.
  • Aches and pains.

If you have any of these symptoms it is usually wise to see a doctor who will give you a full evaluation and make the correct diagnosis. This way you will get the appropriate treatment for your condition. You will also get advice on what to do to reduce your stress levels.

Home Remedies For Stress

Although there are medicines that you can get to help you reduce stress, there are also home remedies you can engage in or use to serve the same purpose. These are usually simple things that you do, small changes you can make to your life or even activities you can take up to reduce your stress overload. As you look for home remedies, it is important to know that you can only reduce this condition by reducing its impact and also trying to cope with any of the symptoms you have. Furthermore, you need to find solutions that will help you:

  • Learn how to manage stress.
  • Help you relax.
  • Provide a quick stress relief.

You do have the power to reduce the impact of stress in your life. Although you may not eliminate it from your life, you can find a way to control it. It is also possible for you to find new ways for you to channel your stress into productive things. Some of the remedies you can practice at home include: Remember, you should always consult with your physician in order to get a proper diagnosis and before trying to incorporate these home remedies yourself!  

  • Try This- Taking charge of your life, thoughts, emotions, schedule and environment.
  • Try This- Change that stressful situation to a relaxing one if you can.
  • Try This- It does help to change your reaction if you cannot change the situation.
  • Rest- Always take care of yourself by taking time out to relax and rest.
  • Relax- Take up relaxing activities such as yoga, meditation and deep breathing.
  • Exercise- Take up exercising like running or jogging.
  • Diet- Diet for Stress Management.
  • Kavakava -This is among the traditional herbs that has for long been used by generations for treating stress. It has a number of compounds that have the ability to address the body changes that are caused by stress. In addition, it is the ideal herb for curing a number of ailments that are linked to stress. Among these ailments include fatigue, mild ulcers and skin problems.
  • Aloe Vera-Aloe Vera is the other most common herb that is used in relieving stress. It is administered orally, through drinking after mixing with tea and other beverages. There are also aloe Vera tablets that are also used for combating stress. Unlike many other types of herbs that are used for curbing stress and its symptoms, aloe Vera has no scientifically proven side affects. In fact, it is revered for its ability to provide the body with a number of benefits such as boosting body's immune and healing ailments that are linked to stress.
  • Evening Primrose -This is the other herb that has for long been used as an ideal herbal remedy for stress. It is also administered orally by mixing it with tea and other types of beverages. However, doctors and other health specialist have noted that, it ought to be taken in small dosages, thanks to its side effects that it can have on the body.
  • Ginseng- This is the other type of herb that has for long been used for countering stress. It contains many chemicals that have a lot of health benefits. In addition, it provides cure for many ailments that are linked to stress. It also functions as a mild sedative, which helps in relieving stress.
  • Rhodiola Root- This is among the most effective herb for providing herbal remedy for stress. It is administered orally through by drinking after mixing with tea and other beverages. It also addresses the vast body changes that come along with stress.

Diet For Stress

Another remedy that you get from your home can be your diet. Fortunately, it is possible to control your stress levels with the kind of diet you have. There are certain foods you can eat to help you relieve stress. There are also other foods you can avoid to protect you from escalating your stress levels. All you have to do is to learn what foods can help you relive stress.

If you are the kind of person who runs to food each time you feel stressed, then you need to know the foods to munch on and which to avoid.  In this case, you must remember that food is your ally and not the enemy. The ten top food stress relievers include:

  • Almonds – These have riboflavin (vitamin B2) and magnesium that produce serotonin and hormone to help regulate your mood and relieve stress. It also has vitamin E, which works as an antioxidant and it destroys free radicals that lead to stress.
  • Fish – Having this is your diet gives you plenty of the B-vitamins that prevent depression
  • Broccoli – It contains vitamin B and folic acid both of which relive stress, panic, anxiety and cases of depression.
  • Whole grain rice – The carbohydrates in this food is known to increase the serotonin levels in your body and provide you with a calming and soothing effect.
  • Milk – A glass of milk will provide you with vitamins B2 and B12. It also contains antioxidants that work on free radicals which cause stress.
  • Beef – Lean beef can still provide you with iron, zinc and the B vitamins all of which are important in relieving stress.
  • Blueberries – They are not only a good source of fiber but also effective antioxidants and also provide vitamin C all important in reducing stress levels.

Prevention Of Stress

It is next to impossible not to become stressed in life. Almost every situation you face will come with its pressures and demand that could often lead to stress.  Furthermore, there is stress that you can use to be more productive and successful if you know how to channel it through the course and there is one that can kill you. To prevent yourself from being consumed by stress overload you need to learn how to tolerate the situation.

  • Learn of your individual stressors and how they work.
  • Known your one limit, be it at work and in relationships.
  • Take time to relax and have fun.
  • Never procrastinate what you can do now.
  • Have an optimistic attitude.             
  • Learn how to calm down and soothe your emotions.

It may take time for you to realize that you are actually stressed. However, you will be better of being prepared and having the knowledge of what stress is, its causes, symptoms and what you can do about it. It is also good to remember that stress has its negative and positive sides.