The killer stress
During my time here at Wealthy Affiliates I have met a ton of terrific folks. Personalities all over the place, nearly all willing to give of themselves and help the new guys and each other. One thing I have noticed that disturbs me though is that, particularly among the new folks, there is a good bit of talk of stress. I've been interested in the subject for years and done a lot of research on the subject. I would like to share with you what I have found.
What is stress?
There are a ton of definitions out there. It's kind of like trying to define wisdom. It's easier to define it by describing what it is not. It is not a state of absolute tranquility, a state of mind free from worry, fear, tension, anger and resentment. It is one of the deadliest conditions known to man and is now considered to be at the root of all disease.
I am going to mention this now and at the end of this post because it is so critical, it warrants two mentions. Stress is not caused by external conditions. We create our very own stress by the way perceive and react to those externals. Dr Bruce Lipton at Stanford University has proved that faulty beliefs that often reside in our subconscious are what create the stress. More on this in a bit.
The anatomy of stress
In order to understand the mechanics of the damage stress causes, it is necessary to understand a bit about the autonomic nervous system. This is the system that controls all the involuntary subsystems such as blinking, heart beat, digestion, cell division and a host of others.
There are two primary parts to the autonomic system. The parasympathetic nervous system is the normal operating mode where all the routine cell functions are performed. That includes receiving nutrients, water, oxygen, cell division, removing waste--all the normal functions.
The second part part of the autonomic system is called the sympathetic nervous system. It is also known as "fight or flight" and goes all the way back to a time when we were lunch for the dinosaurs.
Now, in the parasympathetic mode--the normal mode--everything is hunky-dory. All systems go. The cells are open, nutrients, water, oxygen are entering the cells. Division, breathing, waste removal, everything working.
But over there in the wings lurks the evil villain.....stress. He attacks. It could be anything from a Great White or a financial tripwire. But it is stress. That activates the flight or mechanism--the sympathetic system. Your cells shut down, all your blood is redirected to your muscles in preparation for flight. Eyes dilate, heart pumps faster. You're at Defcon 4.
How it works on you
Now most of the time you are in the normal mode--parasympathetic mode-- and short periods of stress are not an issue. However when the stress hits, you move into the sympathetic mode and it becomes a battlefield. Your cells shut down and all supplies are cut off include life giving oxygen.
Here is where it becomes critical. Nobel Laureate Dr. Otto Warburg once said, "Deprive a cell 35% of its oxygen for 48 hours and it may become cancerous. Do you think there may be a connection between stress and cancer? Other diseases?
Remember our friend Dr. Bruce LIpton? He said that when the cells are in growth mode--cells open--they are impervious to disease. But when they are closed, they quickly become sick. And that's when disease sets in.
How do you manage stress?
Remember in the beginning when I said I would come back to the issue of stress not being caused by external circumstances? Dr Lipton explains that stress is simply an interpretation of an internal image that shifts us over to the sympathetic system.
So it is not external things that stress us. It how we react to these "stressful things".
It is our preconceived notions and attitudes that determine whether we go bananas or just grin and go about things.
There are a lot of things we can do to wipe out stress. Maintain friendships, frequent walks, stop eating trash, breath deeply at least once an hour, listen to music, sing in the shower, bark at the moon.
A major biggie and a great way to wipe out stress is to monitor your self talk. Experts tell us that some 60000 thoughts cross our minds every day, and roughly 60% of them are negative.Tune in and listen and bury the nonsence with positive self talk.
Here is an excellent post by leoemery on self talk. Hope you read it.
I hope this helps and that you will use to your advantage.
My very best,