5 Things you didn't know about stress


Most people think of stress as a bad thing. After all, it's the leading cause of illness and disease in the United States. But what many people don't know is that stress is actually a natural reaction to events that make you feel overwhelmed or threatened. While it's often seen as a negative thing, stress is actually our body trying to be helpful.

When we experience stress, our body goes into "fight or flight" mode. This is a survival mechanism that dates back to our caveman days. When we were faced with a dangerous situation, our body would release a burst of energy so that we could either fight the threat or flee to safety.

While this response is no longer necessary for survival, our body still reacts this way to stressors. The release of energy causes our heart rate to increase, our breathing to quicken, and our muscles to tense up. This is all part of the "fight or flight" response and it's our body's way of preparing us to deal with a stressful situation.

So, while stress may not be pleasant, it is actually a normal and healthy response to events that make us feel overwhelmed. It's our body's way of preparing us to deal with difficult situations.

If you're feeling stressed, there are a number of things you can do to cope with the stressor and help your body return to a state of calm.Deep breathing, relaxation techniques, and exercise are all great ways to reduce stress. And, if you're struggling to cope with a particularly stressful situation, don't hesitate to seek out professional help.

What is stress?

Stress is a physical, mental, or emotional response to a demand or change. Stress can be caused by both positive and negative life events, such as getting married or divorced, starting a new job, or experiencing a death in the family. There are three different types of stress- acute, episodic, and chronic. Acute stress is the most common type of stress and is caused by short-term events, such as an upcoming deadline at work or a fight with a friend. Episodic stress is characterized by periods of high stress followed by periods of low stress, such as when you're juggling multiple deadlines at work. Chronic stress is constant and long-term, such as caring for a sick family member or living in poverty.

While some amount of stress is normal, too much stress can be harmful. When our body is constantly in a state of "fight or flight," it takes a toll on our physical and mental health. Over time, chronic stress can lead to serious health problems, such as heart disease, stroke, and anxiety disorders.

Acute stress

Acute stress is the result of a sudden, unexpected event, such as being in a car accident or getting a call from your boss while you're on vacation. Acute stress can be beneficial because it can help you stay alert and focused in a dangerous or difficult situation. However, if the stressor is not resolved quickly, it can lead to chronic stress.

Here are some natural methods for managing acute stress:

-Deep breathing: This is a simple but effective way to calm your nervous system. Sit with your spine straight and take slow, deep breaths in through your nose and out through your mouth.

-Meditation: Meditation can help you focus on the present moment and let go of stressful thoughts. There are many different types of meditation, so find one that works for you.

-Exercise: Exercise is a great way to relieve stress and tension. It can also help you clear your mind and focus on the present moment.

-Spending time in nature: Spend time outside in nature and take in the fresh air to center yourself. This can be especially helpful if you live in a city and are feeling overwhelmed by the hustle and bustle.

-Spending time with friends and family: Spending time with loved ones can help you feel supported and reduce stress. Talking to someone about what's causing your stress can also be helpful.

Episodic stress

Episodic stress is characterized by periods of high stress followed by periods of low stress. It's often caused by juggling multiple demands, such as work deadlines, family obligations, and personal relationships. While episodic stress can be manageable, it can also lead to chronic stress if the periods of high stress are frequent or long-lasting.

Here are some some tips for managing periods of high stress:

-Identify your stressors: The first step is to identify what's causing your stress. Once you know what your triggers are, you can start to find ways to avoid or cope with them.

-Create a support network: Family and friends can be a great source of support during times of stress. Lean on them for help and advice.

-Practice relaxation techniques: Relaxation techniques, such as deep breathing and meditation, can help you calm your mind and body.

-Exercise: Exercise is a great way to reduce stress. It can also help you clear your mind and focus on the present moment.

-Eat a healthy diet: Eating nutritious foods can help you feel your best and reduce stress. Avoid caffeine and sugar, which can make stress worse.

-Get enough sleep: Sleep is essential for managing stress. When you're well-rested, you're better able to cope with stressful situations.

Chronic stress

Chronic stress is constant and long-term. It's caused by factors that are not likely to go away, such as caring for a sick family member or living in poverty. Chronic stress can have a serious impact on your health, leading to problems such as heart disease, stroke, and anxiety disorders.

How stress affects the body

When you're stressed, your body goes into "fight-or-flight" mode. This means that your heart rate and blood pressure increase, you start to breathe more quickly, and your muscles tense up. This is all part of the body's natural response to stress.

While stress is a natural reaction to events that make you feel overwhelmed or threatened, it can often become too much for your body to handle. This can lead to health problems, such as headaches, muscle tension, and stomach problems.

5 Things You Didn't Know About Stress

When it comes to stress, there are a lot of misconceptions. Here are five things you probably didn't know about stress- its positive effects, how it's used by the body, and more!

1. Stress can be a positive thing.

Yes, you read that right! While stress is often seen as a negative emotion, it can actually be helpful in certain situations. For example, stress can help you perform better under pressure and make you more alert. It's only when stress is constant and overwhelming that it becomes harmful.

2. The body uses stress to its advantage.

When you're stressed, your body releases a hormone called cortisol. Cortisol helps your body to break down sugar so that it can be used for energy. This gives you the "fight-or-flight" response that helps you to deal with stressful situations.

3. Stress can be contagious.

When you're around someone who is stressed, it's easy to catch their stress. This is because stress is contagious! So, if you're trying to reduce your stress levels, it's important to surround yourself with positive people.

4. There are different types of stress.

Not all stress is created equal. There are four different types of stress: acute, episodic, chronic, and trauma. Acute stress is the kind of stress that you feel in response to a specific event. Episodic stress is stress that happens frequently, but is not constant. Chronic stress is ongoing and long-term. Trauma is a type of stress that occurs in response to a traumatic event.

5. Stress can be physical, emotional, or both.

Stress can be caused by physical or emotional factors, or both. Physical stressors include things like illness, injury, and lack of sleep. Emotional stressors include things like anxiety, sadness, and anger.

Free stress support

Stress is a natural response to events that make you feel overwhelmed or threatened. While stress can be helpful in certain situations, it can often become too much for your body to handle, leading to health problems. In this blog post, we've defined stress, talked about the different types of stress, and discussed how stress affects the body.

We don't always have control over the factors that lead to chronic stress, or stress in general. In a community that often spiritually bypasses those struggling with stress, ignoring the societal factors that leave some groups more susceptible than others, we want to speak about stress differently.

While some of the tips we shared in this blog can be very helpful for combating stress, we know that not all of these are accessible to everyone. That's why Cephalo offers sliding scale and free service options for those who need it. There is no list of qualifiers you must meet to be eligible for these price options. We believe people ask for the help they need. Please email info@cephalo.co for support booking with these price options. If care for a loved one, transportation, etc. is not accessible, we also offer virtual services for those with a Zoom-compatible device. We will also link a list of free mental health resources here.