It is interesting how we tend to compartmentalize our physical health as separate from our emotional health like it is in two different compartments, or locations. More and more research points to their connectedness. Stress for example seems to increase our inflammation response in our body as well as create muscles tenseness, shut down our immune system and create over all tightness in our body. We get a problem i.e. a “stressor” in our day and then our bodies automatically and often without us noticing respond with an increase in our protective mechanism that is also called the “fight or flight” response. This response is natural and helpful for survival but it was intended for short quick energy bursts to correct our possibly dangerous situation thus shutting down many of our other autonomous body requirements.
In our modern world often times the “stressors” are not easily resolved and we get stuck in this hyper arousal state without being aware of it. After some time, it may become our default state and it leads to exhaustion. Some of the more common symptoms of stress include headaches, skin problems, “tightness”, intestinal issues, and changes in sleep or appetite. I often explore with my clients many aspects of the person’s life that are impacting them. Sometimes making changes in one seemingly completely unrelated area can create more balance and reduce our reactions to our “stressors”. Becoming more mindful of your stress, instead of ignoring it is a big first step.