21 Effects of Stress on the Body

Stress is the reaction of the body to a certain circumstance that requires a response or an adjustment from our part. Often the effects of stress on the body have physical, mental and emotional consequences.

In the last 20 years, stress has been a popular subject of study, mostly because we have come closer to understanding the negative effects it can produce. The problem is that stress is part of our normal life. Many events that happen in our life and in our surroundings provoke stress; and therefore, a physical and emotional response. This is the reason why so many people fail when they intent to avoid stress. There’s simply no way to avoid it without isolating yourself from the world. So, a better alternative is not trying to avoid stress, but learning to deal with it in the most positive and efficient way.

But before we learn how to deal with stress, we must understand the effects of stress in our bodies and what it does to our minds.

How to Overcome Anxiety and Regain Control

Few emotions have more power over our bodies than anxiety. When it kicks in we can literally lose control of ourselves. Whoever have gone through this knows that is a terrifying experience to live.

Anxiety is a consequence of believing we have no control over our circumstances. This is of course a lie, a flawed belief: In my opinion we have absolute control of everything that comes into our reality, but this is not so easy to acknowledge when we are deep into negative emotions.

When for some reason the idea that we have little or no control over our lives sinks into our minds, our subconscious fights back with all it has and anxiety is just a byproduct of that fight between the subconscious and the confused conscious mind.

When we wonder how to overcome anxiety, chances are we are already deep into it. But hard as it might be, we don’t need anything else but our own minds to set us free.

Happiness is a Choice

Being happy is not a matter of what you are, or what you do or what you have. Being happy is a choice you have to make consciously. Happiness is not a consequence of external factors, happiness is the lenses through which you can choose to experience reality.

And all that it takes is precisely that: To choose. Only you have the power to do such thing, even in the face of all the circumstances that points you other way.

Every day we see persons with less that what we have: Less money, less opportunities, less love and affection, and in so many cases their physical circumstances are completely irrelevant to their emotional state. This is the most evident proof that happiness is a state of mind, and not a result of our physical achievements.

I am not encouraging you to forsake your goals and ambitions, but don’t believe that those goals by itself are going to make you happy. If you are looking for happiness in external circumstances, you will end up very disappointed.

Pursue your goals because you want to be better, to help others or to make a change in the world, but do it from a place of true joy and satisfaction, and not because you believe that it will fill the void.

Stop looking for happiness, because happiness is not something to get, but a choice to make.

[Social] Contact Vs. [Emotional] Connection

Human relationships are one of the most important aspects of our lives. Whether we are introverts, extroverts, or something in between, we all crave for some kind of connection with other human beings.

For most people the chances to connect with other individuals are relatively abundant. We are in contact with our parents, siblings and family in general. We are also in contact with others at school and at work.
So for most people, the supply of opportunities to connect is not a problem. Then why  human connection is so rare?

Just Breathe

Breathing is something we give for granted. No one can say we don’t know how to breathe, or we wouldn’t be here otherwise. All of us breathe enough to give our organism the amount of oxygen needed to sustain life, but there is so much more about breathing that we ignore.

We rarely take deep breaths and usually when we do it is as part of some kind of exercise or meditating and not as an everyday habit. We only take deep breaths to calm ourselves during a stressful event, when our mind instinctively whispers: “Just breathe“. Instead, throughout the day we inhale small amounts of oxygen and exhale rapidly and repeatedly.

Be Exceptional, Be Present

Today be exceptional. Be present.

 

Be Present

Pour your complete consciousness into three small tasks throughout the day. It does not matter the nature of the tasks. Actually, the more mundane the task, stronger the effect on your consciousness.

Do these tasks alone, in complete silence and peace, when you know no one will disturb you. Perform the chosen tasks as if this is the last thing you will be able to do in life, and for a moment do not allow your mind to wander, to question, to worry.

Focus completely on the one thing that you are doing. Be present even for a few minutes a day.

Perform these tasks like if you were competing for an Olympic gold medal.

 

Be Exceptional

And when you finish, stand there for a moment and contemplate your accomplishments. No one on planet earth could have done it better.

Be satisfied because for a few minutes you were the best version of yourself. You did whatever you were doing exceptionally.

For me tonight my three exceptional tasks were eating dinner, washing the dishes and washing my hands.

The sense of accomplishment comes from knowing that we have invested our whole conciseness into something beyond our mind, that we have taken a piece of reality and out of our actions we have made it not only better, but exceptionally better. To our mind does not matter at all if we are talking about a worldwide competition or walking the dog.

Be exceptional in your doing and you will feel accomplishment in everything that you do.