The Impact of Stress & How Hypnotherapy Can Help
April is Stress Awareness Month so it seems very fitting to do a blog on stress!
Stress is something that affects all of us to some degree. Much as we’d love to, it’s impossible to avoid stress completely.
The last few years have brought a huge amount of stress for most of us and this can mean that our stress buckets are very full on a day-to-day basis.
While you can’t avoid stress, you can change the way that you respond to it. Because stress is a factor in so many of the things that bring clients to me, I’m very passionate about helping you with getting on top of stress and reacting to it in a more positive way.
I hope this blog helps you to recognise the impact that stress can have on your wellbeing and remind you that you have more control over stress than you may think!
How Stress Affects The Body
When stress occurs and the fight-or-flight response is triggered, the short-term effects can include a racing heart, muscle pain and tension, insomnia, digestive issues, and skin problems.
When stress is a regular part of day-to-day life, it can have a significant impact on health and wellbeing.
Chronic stress can make you more susceptible to illness. If you’re under a lot of stress and you regularly pick up every bug going, it’s probably not a coincidence.
Stress can also be a risk factor for heart disease, heart attack, high blood pressure, hormonal imbalances and many other health problems.
How To Know When Stress Is Getting Too Much
It’s not always easy to recognise when your stress bucket is getting full. If you’re used to living with stress on a daily basis, the physical and emotional effects can feel “normal”.
It’s only when you take a step back or your stress bucket overflows that the true impact becomes clearer.
When stress starts to become overwhelming, it can erode your self-confidence and leave you feeling that you’re not in control. It can also result in a long list of physical and emotional symptoms that can potentially be very debilitating.
Some of the signs that stress is getting on top of you include:
- Getting to sleep (and staying asleep) is a nightly struggle
- Feeling exhausted most or all of the time
- Frequent headaches/migraines
- Chronic aches and pains in the muscles and joints
- Finding it hard to make decisions
- Feeling forgetful (the classic “why did I come into this room?”)
- Feeling snappy and irritable
- Getting upset when even the smallest thing goes wrong
If you experience some or all of these symptoms on a regular basis, I highly recommend looking at your stress levels and taking steps to get on top of stressors.
Tips For Managing Stress
Making sure that you have plenty of opportunities for “me” time and relaxation help to balance the effects of stress.
Let’s take a look at some ideas:
- Meditation – Meditation can help to stop negative thoughts in their tracks and put some much-needed distance between your thoughts and your reaction to them.
- Mindfulness – Mindfulness is another great way to bring yourself into the present moment. Almost any activity can be turned into something mindful – anything from brushing your teeth to washing the dishes. The trick is to completely immerse yourself in the sensations that you’re experiencing. If you’re brushing your teeth in a mindful way, that may mean focusing on the taste of your toothpaste or the feel of your toothbrush, for example.
- Grounding techniques – Grounding yourself is very effective, especially since it incorporates mindfulness too. One of the easiest ways to ground yourself is to use your senses. Look for five things you can see, four things you can feel, three things you can hear, two things you can smell and one thing you can taste – I’ve been known to run for the sugar bowl for this one!
- Breathing techniques – Deep breathing and specific breathing techniques such as “rectangular breathing” calm the nervous system.
- Yoga – Yoga can help to balance mind and body. Deep breathing, focusing on being mindful and gentle stretching can be incredibly powerful for reducing stress.
- Exercise – Exercise in general is a fantastic way to manage stress and release feel-good endorphins. Make sure you choose something you enjoy.
How Hypnotherapy Can Help With Stress Management
Hypnotherapy is incredibly powerful for helping to manage your stress levels.
Whatever the source of your stress, we can calm your mind and help you to feel confident and in control. We can empty your stress bucket so that it doesn’t get to the point of overflow. This can go a long way towards reducing the physical and emotional effects of stress too.
Stress can also affect sleep and we can use hypnotherapy to improve your sleep patterns too. By taking stress out of the equation, sleep can become much easier but if needs be, we can retrain your brain to sleep well too.
If you would like to have a chat about how I could help you change the way you respond to stress, you can contact me on the details below.
I would love to help you to be in control of your stress levels!
Clinical Hypnotherapist & Solution Focused Practitioner
T: 07580 041394