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How food increases stress

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We all have felt stress, we can feel it in our body literally from our shoulders, back, head to our stomach, stress can come from outside sources, but it can also be increased in the inside. Have you ever stopped for a minute and think about how everything you eat impacts your body?

Everything you eat affect your body, from the inside out, how you look, how you feel, your energy levels, your ability to concentrate, your mood.

Our relationship with food has changed throughout the years, nowadays many of us use it as comfort food we´ve found it to be a great coping mechanism to deal with outside stress and pressure but we´re not considering that those unhealthy decisions are causing more problems. When we´re stressed out we´ll look for foods that makes us feel better and typically highly processed foods get this done, they makes us feel better by giving us a rush of feel good chemicals and then the crash comes, we want more of those foods and we end up in a negative cycle that keeps us feeling stressed and can even lead to depression.

Every time you eat highly processed foods your body doesn´t know what to do with them, it is not design to digest processed foods that lack nutrition and one of its responses is inflammation as a way to protect you from something harmful or toxins and your body sees those unhealthy foods as something that can be harmful for you.

Inflammation is a response of stress and even when you can experience inflammation for short periods of time nowadays you´re dealing with it for long periods of time which is chronic inflammation and chronic inflammation is related to many health problems like insulin resistance, obesity and others.

We all have suffered from digestive problems like bloating, stomach pain, cramps, heartburn and it can go to something worse like leaky gut the problem in most cases is an unhealthy diet. Most of us eat too much highly processed food every single day which doesn´t give our body the nutrients it needs to function properly, and they can cause more problems by putting our body in a defensive and protective mechanism.

Everything you put in your body will have an impact inside and outside of your body, we all know that highly processed foods are bad for us the problem is that it´s not easy to eliminate them from our diet or avoid them but you need to find ways to reduce them as much as possible with the goal of eliminating some of them completely of our diet (if you do this process the right way you won´t miss most of them 😊) , there are foods that will make you look and feel great and there are some foods that will make you feel bad; even whole, fresh, healthy foods. Some foods can make you feel bloated or you may have stomach pain like cauliflower in my case, some foods can cause acne like dairy in some people or peanuts.

If everything you eat has an impact on your body then food can cause stress if you make the wrong choices which most of us do by choosing unhealthy, highly processed and refined foods but if you make the right choices then food can lower stress, lower inflammation, food is actually medicine. What you eat alters your brain, your mind and research show that your choices in every meal can make depression and anxiety worse or it can lower them.

If you want your body to respond and perform at peak you need to make sure that you´re giving it the nutrients it needs and the ones that it can use more efficiently, you need to listen to it and make it as simple as possible. We get enough stress from outside sources, so we need to make sure that we don´t increase stress with what we eat.

For your next meal make a good choice, go for something cooked with fresh ingredients or go for a healthy snack like nuts and seeds and see how you feel.

We all know which ones are the healthy foods we should be eating so make a challenge, for this week eat only whole, fresh foods and avoid unhealthy highly processed and refined foods and focus on how you feel. Focus on progress not perfection, avoiding unhealthy foods is difficult so take it one meal at a time and if for any reason you make the wrong choice just move on and think about your next meal, with time you´ll develop the habit you need to make the right choice most of the time and you´ll see that you can still enjoy your favorite dishes and snacks. To make the challenge easier focus on just one meal, if you have unhealthy breakfast like cereal make it healthier by having some eggs cooked any way you prefer with healthy ingredients, you can use olive oils or coconut oil to cook them or if you don´t have time then focus on dinner and make sure you prepare your dinner with healthy ingredients.

Let us know by leaving a comment down below and on Twitter if you´ve ever take the time to think about how food make you feel, especially after a meal.

If you know someone who could benefit from this post please share it with them and don´t forget to follow us on Twitter.

Pam

Stress

Anxiety and stress

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Do you deal with anxiety? That stress when you´re so worried about the future, about what would happen, that fear can be paralyzing.

Anxiety is the response of our body to the worries and fears of the future and of the unknown, as with stress and pressure the way we see it, our perspective of the situation we´re going through can make the problem worse or if used right it can be helpful. We can feel anxious for so many different situations, there are different types of anxiety-related disorders which we´re going to see in future posts and while some of those situations will only make us feel anxious for a small period of time there can be cases where that anxiety keeps growing.

When we think of stress, pressure and anxiety as the response of our body to certain situations then it´s easy for us to cope with it.  We need to understand that feeling anxious is normal, it happens to all of us and we need it in a certain way because life is full of challenges and we´re constantly changing.

The best way to deal or cope with anxiety is finding out where that anxiety comes from, ask yourself why am I anxious? in most cases it´s fear of the unknown, of the future and our mind is amazing at creating the worst case scenarios in any situation which make the problem worse so once you recognize where the anxiety comes from it may be a new project, or changing job, or finishing school and getting out to the real world, whatever it is then imagine yourself conquering that situation or that challenge, be positive and optimistic. Seeing or visualizing yourself in the future in a positive outcome is hard at the beginning but once you develop the habit to be more positive and become optimistic it will be easier.

In most cases our mind creates fear to avoid failure but those fears or those negative outcomes are not real but if we let those unreal fears and worries control us, we will deal with anxiety for the most part of our life.

There are some actions we can take to reduce anxiety that will have an impact on our entire life:

1. Reduce caffeine.- When you´re anxious if you take any form of caffeine it will make your anxiety worse, your heart rate increases, you start shaking, in some cases it can trigger panic attacks,

2. Eat healthy meals.- Food plays an important role so you need to focus on eating meals cooked and prepared with whole, fresh ingredients and avoid processed, junk and fast foods, that contain unhealthy oils and added sugar.

3. Breathe.- Take deeps breathes and focus on inhale and exhale, pay attention to your breathing and feel your body relaxing. By taking our attention to the inhale and exhale and the sensation of our body relaxing our mind calms down,

4. Exercise.- Any type of physical activity improves our mood, especially when you exercise outside in nature,

5. Practice positivity.- This is a lifestyles, it´s not only about replacing negative thoughts with positive one but about seeing the positive outcome in every situation.

As humans we all are exposed to stress, pressure and anxiety and knowing that we can´t avoid them is the first step to make a change at how we think of them, realizing that we actually need them to grow, learn, improve and keep our life exciting will make it easier but we also need to know when it´s too much of them and we need to find ways to lower them or talk to someone who can help us. Even when we share different tools in this site to help you lower them and respond the best way possible it´s important that you talk with your a specialist if you see that your case is bad.

Are you anxious right now? just stop for a moment, take some deep breathes and think about where that anxiety comes from, why are you anxious? what is making you feel anxious? and then think about positive outcomes.

If you need more help leave your comments and questions down below and on Twitter, if there´s something we can do to help just let us know.

If you know someone who could benefit from this post please share it with them and don´t forget to follow us on Twitter.

Pam

Stress

Pressure can be beneficial, here´s how!

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We all have been under pressure but, how do you respond or react to it? do you get stressed out or do you use it to your advantage?

Your answer to the questions before play a big role on your results, if you get stressed while working under pressure then your concentration and productivity lower which don´t get you to your best results, if you use it to your advantage it´s easier to stay focused and concentrated on what you´re doing which increases productivity and you get better results.

Pressure is when there´s something at risk, the end result of a project has a significant impact whether positive or negative on your job, school, relationship, etc. You know you need to perform as best as possible to get the best results.

Many people consider pressure to be stress and if we see it that way then this type of stress is beneficial for us, pressure helps us get things done, we all have activities or things we need to do and because we still have time we let them for later until we don´t have any more time and we need to get them done so thanks to the need and pressure to get it done we do it but in this case if it´s not something we´re interested in we´ll just get it done, we don´t think about the result or if we could have done better it´s done and that´s what matters.

When we´re starting any new project if we use pressure to our favor, we  will get things done, we are more productive and efficient, but this will happen if we start the project with the right mindset and attitude. When we´re assigned a project or we know we need to deliver some work and meet a deadline we feel anxious but how we think about that anxiety is what makes the difference if we think about it as excitement of what we need to learn, if we think about the best result we can deliver while we have in mind that we need to meet a certain deadline and there´s people with some expectations from us then we will get focused and work as best as we can. An important factor to consider here is how much are we interested on the activity or project and how much we like it, in most cases people call it stress because they don´t like what they do, they´re not interested on the project and they actually don´t like it, this is when pressure turns into stress, as you can see we always get to the same point, do we love or like what we do? if we don´t like what we do or we´re not interested that pressure will turn into stress but if we like it that pressure will become excitement and we will put the work and time needed to finish on time.

Pressure can be your opportunity to do your best, to give your all and to perform as best as possible something that you won´t do any other way, how hard are you willing to work to exceed expectations?, all the odds may be against you but are you going to let that stop you or are you going to find new ways, if you want to perform at peak levels to get to those higher stakes then pressure will help you, even when we all are capable of delivering amazing results and great performance most of us do not put all our knowledge and effort on all activities and on those challenges is when we use more of our capacity.

Those are times when we need to trust ourselves and what we´re doing and push out of our comfort zone which is what forces us to grow, we may need to be creative to be efficient with the resources we have so that we can get to the end because we may not have the time to learn all the skills or we may not have the best equipment so we need to find out which skills we can learn that are going to give us the best results and how can we make better use of the equipment and tools we have.

When we go through this journey with the goal in mind to make our best work possible and getting to that higher level that´s when we learn and grow, that´s when we realize that we are capable of achieving bigger things and it motivates us to go for something bigger.

If pressure leads to stress for you then what you can do is not taking more projects than you can handle, say no more often or if for some reason you don´t feel like being able to deliver the results expected or deliver the project on time then also it´s better to say no but, remember that getting out of your comfort zone is key to grow and succeed, getting out of the comfort zone increases pressure so you need to start small accepting small challenges you know you can handle.

Let us know if it´s easier for you to work under pressure or if it leads to stress by leaving a comment down below and on Twitter.

If you know someone who could benefit from this post please share it with them and don´t forget to follow us on Twitter.

Pam

Stress

Too much stress is unhealthy. Here´s why!

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Chronic stress is bad, is making you sick. This type of life that is considered normal is the one causing high levels of chronic stress that is leading to health problems.

We´ve all been in stressful situations and some of us every day, as we saw in the last post there are different types of stress or different levels, many of us consider all types of stress bad but we actually need some of it.

We all know that stress is bad for us and it have a negative impact on our health but not all stress is bad, we need some of it to grow, to get stronger but we need to know how to identify when stress is good and when it´s bad so that we can respond accordingly.

Bad stress or the type of stress that can have a negative impact on your body and health comes from doing something you don´t like and spending time with people you don´t feel comfortable which is what happens to most of us on a daily basis whether we´re at school or job.

High levels of stress for long periods of time which is chronic stress is the type of stress that is bad for you. If you wake up late in the morning, you are stuck in traffic, you get late to school or your job, your classmates are only finding ways to make fun of you, your teachers don´t seem to care about how you feel, your boss don´t like your work, your coworkers spend most time blaming and criticizing so the entire day you are dealing with negativity it becomes cumulative this is why stress is so bad, you get to a point where your body can´t deal with that much stress for long periods of time and you get sick.

If you add to your daily stress that when you wake up every morning you get stressed by worrying about how your classmates are going to make fun of you, bully you or make you feel bad, how you teachers doesn´t care about how you feel, and how hard you worked on your project. Thinking of all the bills you need to pay, how many days you got left before the next paycheck, hope that your boss don´t fire you and you don´t even like what you do then it make sense that your health is not as best as it could.

The points I made in the last paragraphs are some of the situations that keep our levels of stress high for long periods of time and we´ve got use to them, that is bad stress that type of stress is the one that have a negative impact on our lives and our health.

You won´t be able to eliminate stress completely from your life but you need to learn how to cope with it, some steps you can take to reduce it are:

1. Make sure you wake up early each morning and have time to do everything you need to do before going to school or work. Set the alarm clock 10 or 15 minutes earlier, leave everything you need ready the night before,

2. Try to get out of the house earlier to avoid traffic, and if something happens you have some roof to avoid getting late,

3. Don´t take any comments from anyone personal,

4. When you feel stressed during the day take 5 or 6 deeps breathes and focus on inhale and exhale,

5. Take some minutes every night before going to bed to meditate and take all the negative stuff from your mind.

Actually the best step you can take to lower stress is avoid negative people and negative environments, avoid situations that you know are going to stress you but, for most of us this is impossible so the 5 steps will help. If you have the possibility to get another job where you can do what you love that´s great, the best thing that could happen to us is loving our job, loving what we do and working in a place where the relationship with our team and coworkers help us grow and learn.

Since we´re living very stressful lives and for some of us is hard to completely change our lives from one day to another we need to find ways to lower it and understand that not all stress is bad, many of us confuse pressure with stress and many of us want to avoid completely all types of stress and this is wrong, some stress is beneficial and pressure is not that bad if we don´t let it turn into stress.

In many cases how we react to a situation makes it worse, if we take everything too seriously and we always think about the worst case scenario we´re increase stress for not real reason so one thing you can do today is stop taking everything too seriously, there are things or stuff that happen on a daily basis that won´t have an impact on the long run, if someone cut you off on traffic and you get angry it will only increase your stress so instead of reacting just move on, that person may have an emergency or he/she is just being rude and that´s how he/she is so don´t let that action affect you.

If you know someone who could benefit from this post please share it with them and don´t forget to follow us on Twitter.

Pam

Stress

We need some stress. Here´s why!

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You need stress in your life and in your days, some of it. The right amount and right type of stress leads to growth.

We know that there´s good stress and there´s bad stress and in our last post we talked about the differences between stress and pressure which is key to know how to respond on every situation.

Acute stress is good, and you need it, stress is good when it helps you grow and get stronger. When you go to the gym and follow a resistance training workout, you give a stimulus to the muscle to grow, this stimulus is a form of stress and your body needs that stress to change, this is one example of good stress.

Some people consider pressure as a type of stress and for good reasons but pressure is something we´ve all been through and it can help us achieve our best results, for some of us pressure is a type of stress that is good for us.

When you go through acute stress or include some stress in your life in the right proportion it can be beneficial for your brain, body and health, it helps you improve performance, productivity, focus leading to better results. Taking challenges increases stress but if you take the right challenges that stress helps you reach your goals by keeping you motivated and focused on what you need to do so your productivity increases. If you take small daily challenges, then stress is beneficial because it will help you accomplish your tasks.

The reason why you´re able to concentrate and focus is because stress increases cortisol and also chemicals like epinephrine, you feel your heart rate increasing and also blood pressure, this is how your body responds to keep you aware to the situation so that you can act quickly and be safe so all this help you get completely focused and concentrated.

All the process that your body goes through when you´re dealing with a stressful situation has a positive impact on your body and health when it´s in small quantities, some research shows the low levels of stress or acute stress can improve or fortify the immune system.

Taking challenges that will create some stress is a way to keep life interesting some of us  love challenges because they bring something new to our life and we see that stress as a way to get out of our comfort zone but, some people prefer to stay in that comfort zone, they prefer to stay on that known place and taking any challenge can lead to chronic stress which can have a negative impact.

Good stress which helps you grow comes from doing what you love or working for a goal that you want so bad. This means that you know your purpose and you work on it and even when you need to face challenges and struggles you´re actually loving all the journey and even when you hate part of that journey you are able to visualize the end result which keeps you motivated. When you start working on your purpose, you know it won´t be easy but you also know that it´ll be worth it.

When you have a goal or you´re working on a project that excites you the stress you´ll get from facing challenges has a positive impact because you see those challenges as part of the journey, this type of mindset is what helps you keep moving forward and see every challenge from another perspective, a more positive one.

Finding your purpose and working on it gives you a sense of fulfillment and this fulfillment is what makes life meaningful, the more you work on your purpose the more fulfilled and accomplished you feel. When you feel fulfilled, you see challenges as opportunities to grow and have a bigger impact, you can see yourself pass those challenges and as you see your work having a positive impact you get more motivated to continue.

This is why it´s so important to find your purpose and find ways to pursue it, I know that this is hard for some of us since we need to work to pay bills and support our family but, if you can work on your purpose on your spare time the positive impact you get from that time will show when you´re at school or the office.

If you have a 9 to 5 job or you´re in college what you can do is take some time for yourself to find your purpose read the find your purpose post to learn more and follow the steps. Also find strategies to help you reduce daily stress from work or school like breathing and visualizing and as Ellen DeGeneres says be kind, being kind improves our mood and lowers stress.

What you can do today is if you´re working in a project that keeps you stressed out think about it as a challenge, take that whole project and divided into small activities you need to do and focus on one activity at a time and whenever you see someone having a hard time be kind and help them.

If you know someone who could benefit from this post please share it with them and don´t forget to follow us on Twitter.

Pam

Stress

Pressure and stress are different. Here´s what you need to know.

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If you confuse pressure with stress you are losing great opportunities to get something done with outstanding results and you are increasing stress.

There´s a huge problem I see every day, some of us confuse pressure with stress, we get anxious, start panicking and everything goes wrong but there´s a big difference between pressure and stress.

Stress is when we are in a situation where we don´t have enough resources to meet the outcome, we may not have enough time, money, etc  and when we don´t have control of the situation the end results won´t depend completely of us.

There are so many situations that can cause stress in a day to day basis like getting stuck in traffic, being late to a meeting, a long list of emails that we need to answer. If we feel overwhelmed and we know that we don´t have total control of a situation that is stress.

Pressure is when we have control of the situation and the end results depends of us, of our performance, how productive, effective and efficient we are with what we have.

Pressure is that feeling when we only got one shot at any project, that we have a deadline and we have to deliver the best results possible. We are challenged to meet demands.

The reason why it is important to identify both of them is to be able to act the best way possible in each situation, you need to identify if you are in a stressful situation or if you are dealing with pressure. If you are dealing with stress the best you can do is first ask yourself how important is that situation for you, many of us pay too much attention to what others say and think of us, we spend too much time with negative people and this create stress and we don´t need it. Sometimes we make a big deal of meaningful situations and what´s impacting us is the way we react. What you can do here is breathe, take some deep breathes and feel your body calming down. Then ask if there´s something you can do, in many cases there´s nothing you can do so you need to change your focus, do something different and work in other stuff and just move on.

When you are under pressure this means there´s something you need to do whether it´s make a decision or finish a project in a short period of time you need to find the best options and solutions with what you´ve got. Sometimes you don´t have the best resources of time, energy, money, knowledge but your result can impact your job or your life so you need to make the best, you need great performance, effectiveness and efficiency.

We know that stress can have a negative impact on our life and health while pressure can have a positive impact. For some of us pressure helps us stay focus and bring the best of us, taking it as a challenge to learn new skills, to improve, to get stronger is a way to get the best results while for others it can be overwhelming and can have very negative effects feeling as the highest level of stress.

Pressure can lead to anxiety, knowing that an outcome or end results depends of you and not knowing if you are going to be able to deliver on time at the level expected and how is your end result going to be taken creates fear specially if you need to learn new skills.

There are ways and tools you can use to know how to cope with each of them but as always it takes time, the best you can do now is try to avoid negative situations, negative people and negative environments, if you need to work under pressure believe in yourself, believe you can do it, you got everything you need to deliver a great result and even if you don´t know certain skills you can learn them and apply what you learn in your project.

Stress and pressure are different so you need to respond differently to them, stress can have a really negative impact on your body and health while pressure can have a positive impact, stress can lead to bad relationships and bad results when working on a project while pressure can help us meet expectations and get our best results.

One simple question you can ask yourself to know how to respond or what you need to do is:

Do I have control over this? is there something I can do? if the answer is yes think about what you can do to get the best result, or what can you do to improve the situation, if the answer is no then let go off trying to manage or control the outcome. Do not stress with something that is out of your hands.

If you know someone who could benefit from this post please share it with them and don´t forget to follow us on Twitter.

Pam

Stress

Yes! There are different types of stress

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If you are stressed out because you got an important meeting today or you have an important event is not the same type of stressed than the one you live every day when you wake up and it´s getting late for school or work or when you get worried about the bills or when you go to the gym or take some time to exercise. There are different types of stress and to learn how to manage it you need to understand each first.

The 5 principles of fitness are crucial to help us achieve any fitness goal and for overall health, stress is one of them and it has become a cause of different health problems nowadays.

Before we can talk about all the negative impacts of stress and what we can do to lower it we need to now that there are different types of stress and we need to understand each and know how to identify it so that we can act the best way possible and learn that not all stress is bad.

There are 3 types of stress which are: Acute stress, Episodic acute stress and Chronic stress.

1. ACUTE STRESS

Have you ever ridden a roller coaster or practices a crazy sport? That experience or feeling is acute stress, it is short but intense. An exam or job interview can also cause this type of stress. Our body reacts to these threatening and challenging situations but after the challenge is complete our body returns to its calm state. This one is short term and all of us can experience it on a daily basis. We need this type of stress.

2. EPISODIC ACUTE STRESS

This one is when acute stress happens very frequently, people with this type of stress tend to be very negative in every aspect of life, everything that could go wrong always go wrong. They tend to take more responsibilities than they can handle keeping acute stress high. They are anxious, angry, sometimes aggressive, impatience and it can be hard to deal with them, they´re always the victims of their circumstances instead of wondering why all these things happen to them.  The biggest problem with them is that they don´t realize they have a problem, they´ve learnt to make this type of stress as part of their lives so for them it´s normal.

3. CHRONIC STRESS

When stress continues for long periods of times it becomes chronic stress, it comes from constant demands of pressure every single day in school, jobs, families. this type of stress is so unhealthy that it can destroy our mind and body. When people feel so drowned in so many problems and they got to a point where they get overwhelmed and stop thinking about solutions, they just give up and surrender to stress, the biggest problem with this is that people get used to it, most of us live our lives with chronic stress and we don´t even know it´s there, we think it´s how we´re supposed to live and this type of stress is the cause of biggest health and mental problems that can end in suicide.

Stress can be really bad having a negative impact on your physical and mental health and there´s also good stress that can have a positive impact on your life if you know how to use it. The level or type of stress determines how you need to act or respond, in many cases you are able to follow tools that can help you lower it but there can be cases or situations where you need to talk to a professional if things have gone too far.

Stress is a response to any experience and the level of it goes according to the experience or situation you lived and how you are able to cope with it, we all take every situation in very different ways and they all affect us in different degrees, you need to consider this so that we know how to respond and even be prepared for any situation.

The best thing you can do is know how to respond in every situation without getting stressed, remaining calm and being optimistic not only help you respond better during stressful situations and keep stress low but also help make better choices with lead to better results. Some steps you can take to respond better in stressful situations are:

1.- Do not take things too seriously,

2.- Take some deep breathes and focus on your breathe going in and out,

3.- Visualize the positive outcome or result,

In many occasions we take things too seriously and this only makes things worse, how many times have you created or increased any negative or stressful situation just by overreacting when in reality it wasn´t a big deal? The 3 steps I share here can have a huge impact on your day if you remember to follow them, the next time you find yourself on a stressful situation just remember to calm down, take some deep breathes  and think of a positive outcome. Just by calming down and breathing you´ll be able to think better and make a better choice.

If you know someone who could benefit from this post please share it with them and don´t forget to follow us on Twitter.

Pam

Stress

What is stress?

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Do you know what´s the number one cause of visit to the doctor or health practitioner? In must cases it´s stress.

Chronic stress is making you sick. If you live what can be considered a normal life then you are living with high levels of chronic stress without even knowing it, you may think it´s normal, you may think that´s how you´re supposed to live but, this is causing a lot of health problems mentally and physically.

From the moment you wake up until you go to sleep you are dealing with stress, if you hit the snooze bottom, by the time you get out of bed you may be late, then you may spend some time stuck on traffic to get to school or your job which cause a lot of stress especially if you´re driving, when you get to school or the office you need to spend time with people you don´t feel comfortable, people who make fun of you whether they are classmates or coworkers and working with a boss and teachers that only cares about results and the people increases stress.

Social media is also a huge problem, so many guys share pictures of them in great places and with a great physique and seems like their having a lot of fun and a great time and it´s actually the opposite, they´re looking for the likes and love on social media but they feel empty inside they´re not actually living the life they´re sharing. This creates high expectations and make followers think that there´s something wrong with them.

All of us can handle low stress and even high stress for a short period of time but no one can handle high levels of stress for long periods of time and when you spend most of the time stressed your body will get sick. Have you listened to the “fight or flight” response? This is your body preparing to either fight or run. If you are in a very stressful situation you may feel your muscles tense, and your heartbeat increases. Stress releases cortisol and adrenaline in the body, some people know cortisol as the stress hormone. When you are under stress your body prioritize safety so it shots down the immune system to conserve energy, when you are in a stressful situation your body uses all the energy it has to keep you safe, in case you need to run or fight it makes sure that you have all energy available to act and in those moments you are not worried about growth or recovery so the immune system shots down, when the immune system is off thanks to the stress hormones that´s when you get sick.

The problem nowadays is that most of us live with chronic stress, this means that we´re constantly triggering the stress hormones which keeps us aware in case we get fired and need to find a new job or in some cases we´re worried about being able to pay the bills. We´re also worried about what our classmates and teachers are going to say and think of us, we´re constantly scared of afraid about being bullied. So, with stress hormones elevated the immune system is not working efficiently and it result in illness, we get sick because our body is not able to grow and recover and it can´t prevent diseases.

When your body stays stressed for a long period of time called chronic stress is when a lot of health problems take place and you get sick, your body is not able to handle it. Some short-term symptoms of stress are headaches, lack of energy, weight gain, skin problems, digestive issues, bad mood.

Chronic stress makes everything harder and can develop bad habits, some guys start smoking as a way to lower their stress which cause a lot more health problems, it can cause overeating because some people go to food as a way to feel better, most unhealthy foods creates a sense of pleasure the same way alcohol and cigarettes do but they use them as a way to deal with stress.

We all need to find ways to deal with everyday problems, and stress the tricky part here is that those ways you find to deal with it are healthy and not hurting you more.

As you can see, we live with chronic stress and I consider this to be one of the 5 principles of fitness, the other 4 are nutrition, training, mindset and sleep. So being stress highly important I´m going to share with you everything I know to lower stress so that you can get in shape and sustain it but also to live a better life.

Understanding what stress is, the types of stress, when it is good or bad, how we can handle it are key to know how to respond to each situation and learn tools that help us manage it.

If you know someone who could benefit from this post please share it with them and don´t forget to follow us on Twitter.

Pam

Stress

The impact of your beliefs and thoughts on stress

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When someone tells us that something is bad for us, that something has a negative impact in our lives and then we find a lot more people saying the same things then we believe it and with time it becomes part of our beliefs.

How many people that you know think that stress is bad for us? how many of them know what stress really is and the types?

Most of confuse pressure and anxiety with stress and this is a huge problem because if we don´t know what´s the difference and we label all of them as stress then we won´t act the best way possible.

We think that stress is bad so we avoid it at all costs, if our boss assigns us a new project we feel pressure and probably get anxious and most of us label this as stress, some of us talk with a friend and tell them how stressed out we are thanks to that project because we don´t have all the knowledge or skills, we don´t know if we will finish it on time and we still have to continue with our normal job which means that we have double work.

This is how most of us think about a situation like that but it´s not our fault, we´ve been educated to think that way but if we take that same situation and think about is a challenge and get excited by it everything changes, we can think that our boss assigned us a new project because he believes in us he knows that we will deliver the best results possible and that we are capable to finish it, he knows we can learn the skills we need and apply them to the best of our abilities even though it´s something new and he gave us enough time to learn those new skills, apply them and make the best project we can.

If we think about it as learning something new, working on something new and proving ourselves that we are capable of something big we start the project with a positive attitude which effects our entire journey through the project and the end results will be better compare to when we said to our friend that we are so stressed out because of the project and we don´t know if we´re going to finish, in this case we´re already starting with a negative attitude and setting the road to barely finish the project (if we do finish) and the result won´t be the best.

How we think about the situation we´re in has an impact on our day and the project or activity we´re working on, just by changing our thoughts and beliefs we can have a complete different result, this is why practicing positivity creates improves our life, positivity is not only thinking positive thoughts, is about making the best out of any situation, what can I learn from this? how can this help me in the future?

Our thoughts and beliefs play a big role on how we see our life and every situation we face every day, there´s a reason why positive people who always are smiling or focusing on the positive on everything seem to have better choices, better opportunities and live better, they´re simply attracting more positivity to their lives just by how they think.

So yes, stress can make us sick and even kill us as some people say if we let it, if we belief that stress is bad it will harm our body even the bad type of stress called chronic stress and if we use tools to lower this type of stress, after some time of using those tools consistently we will see improvements in how we feel and how we respond to those stressful moments in our day to day.

If you know someone who could benefit from this post please share it with them and don´t forget to follow us on Twitter.

Pam

Stress

Reduce stress by focusing on what you can control

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We all get stressed, actually must of us live with high levels of chronic stress that have a negative impact on our health but, have you stopped for a moment and think how many times that stress comes from things or situations that are out of our hands? Things we cannot control?

We all want to have a sense of control or at least make possible scenarios of what could possibly happen on a certain situation, for some reason we think that if we have control over every single person and situation then we can avoid bad things to happen or we think that by worrying and thinking about the worst result and think about the negative outcomes we can be prepared and know how to respond or we can be safe.

The truth is that we´ll never have total control over everything that is going on and every person and wanting to have everything under control only increases stress.

Even simple things like what other people think and say of you can increase stress and you don´t have control over that. This example keeps so many of us worried and lead to stress especially if we want to please everyone which I impossible, one of the reasons this increases stress is because we´re hiding who we really are so that we can fit in.

Also simple situations like raining or getting stuck on traffic because of an accident are situations we cannot control, we cannot decide when we want to rain and when not and we do not have control over accidents so what we can do is be prepared or sometimes the best things we can do is remain calm and accept there´s nothing we can do and the worst we see the situation the worst everything we´ll get.

There are some steps we can take to make sure that we do not get stressed with things that are out of our hands, here are those steps:

1.- Identify what you can control and what you cannot

2.- Accept that there are some things that are out of your hand and there´s nothing you can do

3.- Identify the real reason why certain things or situations keep you worried, sometimes our mind creates different negative scenarios or results which are not true

4.- Focus on the things you can control, make sure that you don´t waste mental energy and time on the situations and people you cannot control and focus all that energy and time on the things you do have control.

When we focus on the things we can control we usually get great results and we also stop our mind from creating negative scenarios. Since we can only focus on one activity at a time and hold one thought at a time we only need to focus all our attention and concentrate completely on the activity we can control to reduce stress and make sure that we get the best outcome possible.

If you´re going to be in a situation where you know there are some things you cannot control try to have a plan that helps you respond the best way possible, especially if you tend to focus on the stuff you cannot control, have a plan or strategy that helps you stay focus on the things you can control.

Also when you accept that there will always be things out of your hands you can concentrate on working as hard as you can and giving your best, knowing that you did everything you can on what you can control makes you feel satisfied with the result and stop blaming yourself for something that didn´t end as planned especially if that something was out your hands.

We all tend to live with high levels of chronic stress so finding ways and strategies we can reduce help us improve our health and our life. One way to reduce stress by being aware of things we cannot control, that are out of our hands, accepting that there´s nothing we can do and stop focusing on them, instead focus and work on the ones we do have control and make sure we do our best.

If you know someone who could benefit from this post please share it with them and don´t forget to follow us on Twitter.

Pam