But beyond a certain point, stress stops being helpful and starts causing major damage to your health, your mood, your productivity, your relationships, and your quality of life.Under sudden stress, you will get a burst of exceptional strength and endurance, as your body pumps out stress hormones:
- Your heart speeds up
- Blood flow to your brain and muscles increases up to 400 percent
- Your digestion stops (so it doesn't use up energy that's needed elsewhere)
- Your muscle tension increases
- You breathe faster, to bring more oxygen to your musclesPsychologist Connie Lillas uses a driving analogy to describe the three most common ways people respond when they’re overwhelmed by stress.
- chronic fatigue
- digestive upsets
- back pain.
- stress affects the blood cells that help you fight off infection, so you are more likely to get colds and other diseases.
- increase blood pressured
- increased risk of stroke.
- increase the risk of heart attacks
- worsen asthma or cause an increase in frequency of attacks
- triggers behaviors that contribute to death and disability, such as smoking, alcoholism, drug abuse etc.
- diminished sexual desire
- inability to achieve orgasm.
- stress makes it harder to take other steps to improve health, such as giving up smoking or making changes in diet.
- Self- Esteem problems
- Can make you feel jumpy/shaky
- Feeling of hopelessness
- According to the American Academy of Family Physicians, two-thirds of office visits to family doctors are for stress-related symptoms.
- Stress-related mental disorders have been called the fastest-growing occupational (work-related) disease in the U.S.
Physical activity is one of the best methods of managing stress. It benefits your stress levels in a few basic ways.
1. Exercise is physically and mentally strengthening, allowing your body to withstand the effects of stress.
2. Exercise stretches muscles that have grown tight due to stress.
3. Exercise requires the mind to focus on the activity at hand, rather than whatever is currently stressful.
4. Exercise burns adrenaline stores, built up from minor daily stresses, and releases endorphins, which cause a calming effect on the brain (this is the "high" you might feel after a workout).
5. Exercise increases your oxygen intake.
6. Boosts self-esteem and overall feeling of wellness.
"Exercise increases blood flow to the brain, releases hormones, stimulates the nervous system, and increases levels of morphinelike substances found in the body (such as beta-endorphin) that can have a positive effect on mood. Exercise may trigger a neurophysiological high-a shot of adrenaline or endorphins- that produces an antidepressant effect in some, an antianxiety effect in others, and a general sense of "feeling better" in most."
-Michael H. Sacks, M.D.: Exercise For Stress Control
If you didn't read any of that or if you didn't find it at all motivating or interesting..maybe these power pics will do the trick!