Terris Little Haven

I've traded scrubs for relaxation as a retired nurse, soaking up the Southern charm in Georgia and living my ultimate life! With my furry friends by my side, I'm not just a tiny house dweller – I'm a tiny house enthusiast, blogging my heart out along the way!

Health & WellnessMental Health

How Stress Makes Us Sick (and What We Can Do About It Now)

If you are feeling sick on a regular basis, you might think that you’re constantly having to fight colds or that your immune system is not very good. But for most average people who don’t have a problem with their immune system, why are you getting unwell? Stress might be the issue. How does stress make us unwell, and what can we do to manage it?

Understanding the Physical Symptoms of Stress

Many people still think that stress is a mental or emotional thing, but stress can show up in a number of ways. For example, headaches, muscle tension, chest pain, dry mouth, grinding your teeth when you’re sleeping, and frequent colds and infections. Prolonged stress can be significant because it can contribute to a range of health problems and can affect the musculoskeletal system and result in a suppression of the immune system. 

Many people look to dealing with physical symptoms of stress through escapism. For example, many people opt for THC or legalized marijuana through an abundance of vape cartridges and associated supplies, but it’s important to remember that chronic stress is partly about calming the physical symptoms, which can be beneficial through escapism, but we must also recognize how to cope with it as well.

Dealing With Stress in a Difficult World

We can all feel overwhelmed because of the variety of things we need to do. There isn’t that same sense of separation between work and home life anymore for so many people, and therefore, we need to learn how to cope with stress more effectively. 

When we have physical symptoms of stress like the fight or flight syndrome, we have to understand the root causes first. But if we’re not able to peel back the metaphorical onion through counseling, we can work at reducing the physical symptoms of stress in other ways. 

One effective tool that many people are taking to their hearts is through specific deep breathing techniques, particularly the Wim Hof Method, traditionally known as Tummo breathing. Essentially, it is cyclic hyperventilation that stresses your body, and over time, exposing yourself to this type of stress can help you to deal with negative emotions more effectively. Breathwork is something that we can incorporate into our lives because it’s a very simple thing to do, but it’s important to always make sure you are doing it safely.

Recognize Your Triggers

Sometimes we need to look at it from the perspective of treating an addiction. Anybody that’s trying to reduce reliance on substances can benefit from understanding their triggers and avoiding those. 

If daily life is a trigger and stress seems to be a default setting for you, you need to start looking further into what is particularly stressing you out. For example, if you’re feeling overwhelmed by the amount of things you need to do, start to look at what’s actually important rather than thinking you have to do a huge list of tasks. Determining what is important or urgent, as per the Eisenhower Decision Matrix, can be a very useful tool.

Stress can make us unwell and is essentially the Trojan horse for a number of different diseases and ailments. For the sake of our wellness, the modern world is not going to let up, so therefore, we’ve got to learn effective techniques.

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