Mastering Stress Through Witnessing
By Kreg Weiss, B HKin • August 24th, 2008 • 12779 Views
The quality of one's life is highly dependent on becoming proactive in selecting healthy lifestyle choices. Quality of life is measured on a broad scale looking at one's overall wellness, which encompasses physical, mental, emotional and spiritual health. As many people are now more knowledgeable about developing greater awareness towards improving physical health, most people still endure chronic stress that manifests into disease, depression, reduced energy, and other undesirable ailments.
In a culture that nourishes the Ego and materialism, the bulk of society relates value to the physical and has become disconnected to the spiritual energy within us. With this disconnection, many have become unconsciously ignorant of how chronic stress festers in the mind and body. Not until a debilitating disease or condition arises, do many people finally take notice and seek guidance in changing their lifestyle.
So how we address stress?
First, it is impractical to think that one can completely ‘eliminate' external stress from one's life. Stressors will always be present regardless of the environment. It is how one allows the stress to internalize and act on the mind and body that is key.
Second, it is important to understand and appreciate exactly what stress is and what happens when one allows it to infiltrate the mind.
In its' basic definition, stress is something that causes mental or emotional strain. The root word in this definition is ‘cause'. A stressor can exist outside the body, but it only manifests as inner stress through choice. We choose to allow stress to transmit from the external to the internal. In many cases, inner stress surfaces without any presence of external stressors. Many people choose to allow thoughts and experiences of the past and future to fester without relevance in the moment bringing forth waves of burdening mental stress.
When a stress stimulus is present, the mind processes the relevance of the stress and elicits a neural response. Through a cascade of neural processes and hormonal reactions, the stress response manifests into a physical reaction where glands, organs, and muscular tissue become activated. This stress response is critical for emergency situations allowing the body to rapidly react and remove itself from this environment. In high stress environments, the heart rate is elevated, blood is shunted to the muscles from organs, and breathing rate increases. Once one is...