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Crack Stress Before It Cracks You

Studies confirm that stress not only contributes to weight gain, but also inhibits weight loss.  Stress causes a cyclical process of overeating that produces imbalances and spikes in cortisol and insulin.  These hormones contribute to fat being stored around the abdomen and hips that produce inflammation, diabetes and heart disease. 

The complex and damaging effects of stress impacts weight, hormones, self-confidence and overall health.  Stress is inevitable as it is part of our daily lives.  The good news is your body knows how to respond to stress, if it’s functioning the way it is designed to.  There are many contributing lifestyle factors that improve or inhibit the body’s ability to handle and respond to stress.
It is common for people to say manage stress or stress management, but understand that you personally cannot effectively manage something that your body should have full control of.  The same logic applies to disease.  You don’t manage disease do you?  You manage health.   
Disease is something that your body knows how to handle, but through poor lifestyle choices it has succumb to illness. By applying healthier principles of living and lifestyle factors you will improve how your body naturally responds to stress and restore health and healing to your body.  Here’s what to do.
Exercise Eliminates Stress?
Exercise is an effective way to maximize your response to negative stress.  It will lower cortisol, balance insulin, spike glutathione and trigger hormones that make you happy.  Exercise does not “combat” stress or cure it, it simply allows the body to function at a greater level taking care of stress naturally. 
Panic, The Response Killer
When you panic and become anxious, your body goes into meltdown mode.  If you panic, you’ve lost as anyone that suffers from anxiety, panic attacks, asthma or any other stress related condition fully knows.  The secret is not to add additional mental and emotional stress to the situation.  By adding this stress, it compounds the problem.   
Win or Lose
It has been said that it doesn’t matter if you win or lose; it’s whether you did your very best.  You reduce stress by focusing on your current actions versus the end result.  If you are doing your very best and you are completing tasks in a systematic manner, you will be closer to your end result.  Everything takes time; the more you stress, the less time you have.
Go to Your Happy Place
A prime example is in the movie Happy Gilmore the theme is “go to your happy place”.  This may seem ridiculous, but it is very effective to be able to step away and re-focus.  This is different for everyone. What is it that you love?  Focus on your family, the next vacation, your home, a park or something that satisfies you.  The focus on these items calms you, relaxes you and reminds you of what to aspire to. 
Your House is On Fire!
If your house is on fire, you need to move out of the house.  If you are under a lot of stress, you may need to step out and re-group yourself.  Go for a walk, relax and find something that takes you out of the negative environment.  The solution is not to ever have stress; it’s to know how to respond to the best of your ability. 
Paralyzing Fear
If you fear something, do not run.  Fear is a powerful paralyzing stress that wreaks havoc on your entire life and health.  Challenging situations, conversations and relationships are there for everyone to grow and learn from.  Positive action steps that are into the face of fear will diminish stress and create a victory for you and everyone around you. 
The Road Less Travelled
We all need to re-program what obstacles, challenges and seemingly impossible situations mean to success, life and health.  Challenges may require effort, but that effort makes you stronger versus weaker.  Exercise and working out is a positive stress, it makes you stronger.  Instead of looking for the “easy” road, try to find the road less travelled.  This pioneering may reveal a whole different life that you never thought was possible. 
20/20 Vision
The saying you cannot see the forest from within the trees is very true.  If you only focus on one thing that is constantly changing and evolving, you will never win.  A business is constantly changing marketing strategies, business models, focus, priorities and if you are only focused on reaching the eventual goal, you will never get there.  You will get hit by a car if you are trying to cross the street with binoculars on. 
Effective business does have long term goals and plans, but daily action is what will get everyone closer to the eventual goal.  The process of success and achieving goals is more important that reaching them.  Do your best, forget the rest. 
TV Disconnect
Our organs such as our heart, lungs and liver can only survive with a connection to the nervous system.  Connections give us life and are a necessity in reducing stress and living to our potential.  Connect with your family, friends, loved ones, peers and your community.  Life and success relies on inter-connectedness.  Technology has disconnected many of us through the use of television, video games, email and texting.  Today re-connect with someone in person. 
Depressed Actions
Stress causes hormonal changes that contribute to depression.  Depression causes one to appear lazy, disconnected or bored from an outside viewer.  The lack of action causes additional physical and emotional stress that compounds the problem.  Combat inactivity with activity and set focus upon the effectiveness of action versus the end results.  Happiness is found on the journey of life, not at the destination. 
Our mindset plays a significant role in our health, relationships and success.  The application of these principles will bring you closer to understanding that life is precious and worth living to your fullest potential.  Reducing stress is sometimes not achievable, but you can improve how your body can respond to the stress. 
The primary goal of improving mindset, balancing neurology, improving diet, enhancing fitness and eliminating toxins is to prepare the body for it’s best response to whatever life throws at it.  A missing component in reducing stress is commonly the mindset of how to best handle daily stress.  Your body knows how to respond naturally to stress; it just needs no interference from you.  

Dr. Cory Couillard is an international healthcare speaker and columnist for numerous newspapers, magazines, websites and publications throughout the world. He works in collaboration with the World Health Organization's goals of disease prevention and global healthcare education. Views do not necessarily reflect endorsement.

Facebook: Dr Cory Couillard
Twitter: DrCoryCouillard


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