Can your family, friends or co-workers tell when you are having a bad day?
Are you able to put on the mask that hides how you are truly feeling or are you a open book?
I know that the first few years, I was an open book. It was easy to tell the kind of day I was having when talking to me on the phone(the sound of my voice), or in person by taking one look at me (how I was dressed, walked, sat in or got out of a chair) the type of day I was having.
I learned over time how to create a mask I would wear on harder days. I was the Volleyball Mom in charge of the team dinners. I would work my butt off, organizing, shopping, setting it up, running it and clean up.
It hurt like heck but as long as I kept on moving I could keep it hidden.
Once I sat down I could not hide my pain or exhaustion.
Now, most people can’t tell that I am sick except those who are closest to me – they have learned the signs or “my tells”.
I recently have a acquired a new “sidekick”. I am not really sure when my body started showing on the outside what it was feeling on the inside. I noticed it when I had a meeting a few months ago that I had been scheduled to attend. It had been cancelled, rescheduled and cancelled again. Finally, I was given a 10 minute warning the meeting was going to take place.
By the time the meeting was over my neck and upper chest area had a bright red rash. Now, any time I am in a stressful situation or feel uncomfortable the red rash spreads appears.
I had a major melt down the other day and experienced another new outward sign of stress the other day. I was alone and so very upset about a lot of things that day. I was just feeling so done. I hardly ever get that kind of feeling but that day I had been very upset and needed to have a meltdown to flush it all out of my system. However, when the meltdown was over. I had the newest reaction. My family and myself are huge Harry Potter geeks. I looked in the mirror and saw it I had the lightning bolt on my forehead.
I started showing signs of anxiety when I was 19. It started in the form of asthma. Later, I developed ulcers. A few years ago my arms were covered in red scratch marks. I wasn’t conscious to the fact that I was doing it to myself in stressful situations.
There are a so many different ways that stress can effect our bodies.
Physical Effects of Stress Summary
“Specifically stress affects our health by misbalancing the harmony between the sympathetic and parasympathetic branches of our nervous system. The sympathetic branch is responsible for keeping us ready for action; it is the acceleration pedal of the body. The parasympathetic branch is responsible to make us relax, feel more calm and less worried or tense.”
Sweaty palms, Shortness of breath, heartbeat accelerates, butterflies or an upset stomach?
What can we do to help us when we let stress take over our bodies?
What comes to mind?
Swimming, Yoga, Deep breathing, Meditation, Lavender (Essential oils), Calming music and Ice Packs (on forehead) to name a few. I googled what to do to help eleviate stress.
The first one that I came across was EAT CHOCOLATE! (No problem – if I must)
“A new study shows that eating dark chocolate may lower levels of stress hormones known as catecholamines in people feeling stressed out.”
Here are some other suggestions;
- Speak to yourself(in your mind) & Dissassociating yourself can help to calm yourself. Pretend you are in a peaceful, calming place.
- Volunteering can help reduce stress by increasing your own happiness.
- Drink Water ~Even if you are just a bit dehydrated, your body’s levels of cortisol, a stress hormone, increase. Plus, stress causes a loss of fluids because it pushes up the heart rate and causes us to breathe heavier. Also, when we are under stress we forget to eat and drink.
- Vitamin C, one of the most important antioxidants and immune system boosters, is also able to reduce stress.
- Playing Video Games can reduce stress; Not for me ~ I get stressed playing those darn games.
- Pet Therapy; I have seen the effect a pet can have on me personally when I have had a stress day. Studies show that owning a pet can help to lower the blood pressure.
- Say NO to Obligations; I am not very good at taking this piece of advice. I have been told to sit on my hands and not volunteer so much. It is not in my character to sit back and not participate.
~ “Things could be a lot worse, the stress of the situation always could be worse, but I am alive and I have a lot to be thankful for – so I shall not waste my days with stress and frustrations – Life is too short” ~ Catherine Pulsifer
I am a Fibro Warrior ~ Living Life!