What happens to us when we work nonstop regardless of our own physical or mental state to the state of exhaustion? To a state where we are so habitual of work that we don't even realize that our physical state is damaged because we don't know how to take a break?
When we work our self to the state of exhaustion, we damage our physical health. But as our body is so adaptive, it adapts to the situation and you get habitual of that state (of exhaustion), you feel this is normal; I got used to it; now it is all fine, but imagine you run any machine nonstop on its full capacity to the extent where it could not go further and that machine breaks down one day or if not, it's part will start creating trouble or It's efficiency would gradually decrease.
Same happens to the human beings. When we are confronted with something beyond our limitations our body perceives it as a danger or threat, and because of evolutionary conditioning there are two ways of dealing with the situation-fight or flight.
When we opt for fight, we need more resources than we already have or if we plan to flight (escape) again we need more resources than we already have. In such situation our sympathetic nervous system gets activated and provides us the resources we actually need to enhance our coping mechanism or to help us to flight or fight. This can be identified as panic mode but once that situation is over, our parasympathetic nervous system takes over and brings us back to our homeostasis point (point where there is no danger with natural body condition).
When we are in an environment where we feel our resources lack in resolving the problem, our body's response in that situation is called STRESS. And our body responds to stress in the same way as it responds to danger.
Usually when we encounter a stressful situation we activate our panic mode but because of our lack of awareness, we forget to attain and come back to homeostasis. We continue going in that mode for so long that we don't even realize that we are under stress. Our body, like any other machine also shows us the symptoms in many ways but we are so busy to see them and this leads to decline in our efficiency and caliber. We are so exhausted that we can't use our other resources. We continue to be in panic mode and consume extra body resources even when we don't need them.
Imagine a box full of stuff; is it possible to put anything new in it unless we remove earlier stored stuff from it? Our conscious mind works same way. We need to get our priorities clear and we can do that only when we are out of stress mode.
How to identify stress
Following are the ways to identify whether there is stress :
- Confusions all the time leading to an attitude where you can't decide or see things clearly.
- Black and white thinking, no shade of grey - thinking in extremes, not being able to maintain balance.
Assuming the worst.
- Distorted thinking - Taking everything personally, like being attacked by everyone.
- Fast heart beat; sleep disturbances, sweating too much, muscle soreness, nausea, indigestion.
- Restlessness and blood pressure related trouble.
- Crying or having a strong desire of crying even on small issues.
- Anger - either covert and overt.
- Fear of failure, anxiety and Irritability.
- Feeling numb - not feeling any emotion at all.
- Flattened affect - not showing any emotions at all.
- Over reactions - you don't listen to understand or respond. You react.
- Escapism - running away from issues or own feelings.
- Substance abuse.
- Withdrawal from outside world.
Learning to deal with stress
- Know and understand your limits. Know when to stop and take a break.
- Take work as choice not as a responsibility.
- Breathing exercises - It improves oxygen and helps in increasing resources.
- Meditation - as we need to empty old unnecessary to have new and important.
- Prioritize tasks, maintain emotional balance, have proper diet and drink lot of water.
- Contact a counselor or psychologists if unable to handle.
Stress is always not bad
Every human being needs optimal level of stress to function, this much of stress is considered as healthy which is called Eustress. It is required to motivate us to give our best. Problem comes when this eustress increases and we don't get back to normal and end up exhausted.
Understanding stress on mind level
According to Dr. John Kappas, our mind is big ball of energy 12 feet in diameter, As we know if we break down anything in its smallest form, it is all electron, neutron and proton; just energy in different forms.
Center of mind is pit of the stomach and it has two major parts - Conscious (10-12%) : the things we are aware of; logical and reasoning work; decision making. Sub conscious (88-90% of total mind) - store house; stores all information right after 76th day to present day all stored with evolutionary memories.
Our sub conscious is 6000 times stronger than our conscious, while it is our conscious mind's choice in which direction it wants to take sub conscious.
When we talk about law of attraction, all we do is to attract what is already inside us (inside sub-conscious mind) we have all our memories stored in sub conscious mind. How much stress we had stored in our mind since we were kids and we are not even aware of it. And when we have that stress in our mind we will attract even more of it.
Key to handle stress is to understand yourself, your limits, strengths and your limiting factors but before we work on stress, we need to identify and acknowledge that we are under stress, so we could work on the solution.
Change won't be quick as it takes 21 days to create a neural pathway for a habit. Once a neural pathway is developed it becomes our habit. We don't need to force it. It is natural like driving or writing. So with the knowledge, how a neural pathway works let's make a new one with the affirmation. Affirmation repeats 21 times for 21 days. When we have a strong pathway in our mind we will attract it.
Each and every day each and every way, my life is getting better and happier.