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The Warning Signs of Stress By Karen St. Clair, AAMET Certifi ed EFT Practitioner


upset your digestive and reproductive systems, increase the risk of heart attack and stroke, and speed up the aging pro- cess. According to the Center for Disease Control/National Institute on Occupation- al Safety & Health, the workplace is the number one cause of life stress. The CDC reports 110 million people die every year as a direct result of stress. That is seven people every 2 seconds.


C Sources of Stress


The workplace is where it’s at. Your boss dumps a last-minute presentation on you. You feel annoyed, but confi dent that you can handle it. An hour later the phone rings and it’s day care calling to say your daughter is sick and you need to pick her up now. Then more bad news continues to interrupt your day, one that you thought would be problem-free. That crankiness you feel, that headache, that tension in your neck and that desire to devour a box of chocolates — that’s you feeling stressed. It’s also your body sending out a call for help. Your body is speaking to you.


Stress is your body’s natural reaction


to any kind of demand that disrupts life as usual. Your body is designed to keep you


14 ELM™ Maine - May/June 2019


hronic stress disrupts nearly every system in your body. It can suppress your immune system,


safe by sending the stress hormone, cortisol into your cells to allow you to react ac- cordingly to the situation. When cortisol is present, the blood fl ows out of the frontal cortex of your brain and into your extremi- ties so that you can run away or stand and fi ght; your built-in Fight or Flight Response. It’s the way human beings are wired.


Good vs. Bad Stress In small doses, stress is good such as


when it helps you conquer small fears or gives you extra endurance and motivation to get something done. What makes this good is that you’ve utilized cortisol in a positive way and dealt with the situation. You’ve burned it as fuel to accomplish your goal. But there’s also bad stress, which is often caused by worries such as lack of money, your job, relationship or health, whether it be sudden and short or long- lasting. These are the stresses that we stuff down into our bodies and carry for many years. Feeling stress for too long sets off your body’s warning system of physical and emotional symptoms.


Stress Warning Signs Your body’s stress warning signs tell


you that something isn’t right. Much like the glowing orange, “check engine” light on your car’s dashboard, if you neglect the


alerts sent out by your body, you could have a major engine malfunction. Stress that is left unchecked or poorly managed is known to contribute to high blood pressure, heart disease, obesity, diabetes and suicide.


When things aren’t going your way, or


you feel like you are losing control or are overwhelmed, pay attention to the warn- ing signs listed below. These are just some of the ways that your body is telling you it needs attention and extra care:


• Anxiety


• Headaches, muscle tension, neck or back pain


• Upset stomach • Dry mouth • Chest pains, rapid heartbeat • Diffi culty falling or staying asleep • Fatigue


• Loss of appetite or overeating “comfort foods”


• Increased frequency of colds • Lack of concentration or focus • Memory problems or forgetfulness • Jitters


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