We all know stress is bad for us. Stress can be physical, emotional or mental, and frequently our bodies deal with more than one type of stress at a time. The danger of living with stress is that you don’t see the damage it’s doing to your body. The aches, the pain, or just plain feeling badly can become your new normal. Its immediate effects on the body range from rapid, shallow breathing, clinching of the jaw, headaches, insomnia, stomachaches, irritability, and tension in the body (usually the upper shoulders and neck).
People that have been under stress for long periods of time may not even realize their body is in this distressed state.
Stop for a moment and turn your attention inward. Is your breath shallow or rapid? How about your teeth or jaw; are they clenched? Do you have frequent head/neck aches or pain? The problem with chronic stressful conditions is that your body begins to adapt and thinks this is the way it should function. Except it is not, and over time serious damage can be done. Long-term stress manifests itself into depression, overeating, heart-related diseases, and more.
I am here to tell you something that may surprise you. Your body was meant to feel good!
If you don’t feel good on a pretty regular basis, it’s time to get mindful and tune in to your body. Here is your wakeup call; healing doesn’t just happen. You first have to be aware of how your body is feeling, and then take steps to improve how it feels. Remember old habits die hard. Staying mindful and regularly checking in on how your body feels is key. One of my favorite influencers, Chuck Blakeman says “You get what you intend.” He is usually referring to business, but the same holds true here for your body. Intend to feel better! A good life starts with your body now! No matter where you are or what circumstances you are facing, you have the power to promote healing and start feeling good!
Here are some tips to get you on your way:
~Take Regular Breaks. If you are sitting at a desk or working on a project, stop every 90 minutes or so for a short recess. Stretch, walk, or simply take some deep breaths.
~Get Social. Sometimes we become so caught up in our own world or issues that it’s good to step outside of our world and hear what’s happening with others.
~Treat Yourself. Whether it is getting a massage or a personal training session, find something you enjoy and plan for it regularly.
~Create Space. Find white time as often as possible. White time is time on your calendar that is unscheduled and unplanned. Engage in relaxing activities during that time. Chat with loved ones, mediate, or check out the latest relaxing craze: adult coloring books! You can purchase some on Amazon here: Adult coloring pages for relaxing
~Change Your Scenery. Spending time outdoors is proven to boost your mood and have beneficial benefits to your health.
~Positive Affirmations. It may sound silly, and it was very unnatural for me at first, but I came up with a short list that I recite as my mantra often. Over time your affirmations will help increase your energy and promote good feelings in your daily life. Here is a sample: Daily Positive Morning Affirmations for Personal Transformation
Above all, stay in tuned to your body now! Intend to improve your health and feel good. Being present-minded and focused on your health and wellbeing is not selfish. In fact, quite the opposite. By making your well-being a priority, you are doing everyone around you a favor.