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Monday, 21 July 2014

5 Things You Didn't Know About Stress

5 Things You Didn't Know About Stress

We all experience varying levels and lengths of stress, triggered by an array of scenarios –
some logical, others not. Managing this powerful emotional and physiological response to adverse
or demanding circumstances comes more naturally to some, but can certainly be taught
to even the most nervous of them all.
The first step to controlling stress is to know your own personal anxiety, down to its deepest core. What causes your stress? What alleviates it? What affect is it having on your mind and body
and what can you do to stop it?
To assist you on your journey of stress-discovery, here are five truths about stress
that you may not know – but definitely need to be made aware of.

1. Stress is contagious.
Anyone interacting with someone who’s stressed, especially for prolonged periods of time,
has an increased risk of being affected by empathetic stress.
Caregivers and family members of chronically stressed individuals are most at risk here,
but even watching TV shows involving confrontations of stress can transmit the tension.
This empathetic stress negatively impacts the immune system and is toxic to the mind and body
in the long term. 
Know your limits when it comes to how much stress you can healthily expose yourself to. 
Also, be cognizant of how your worry may be negatively impacting those around you.
If you reach out to a sorrowful friend, a mourning parent, or a downhearted colleague
who has suffered a sudden reversal of fortune or fate, be careful not to be 
overcome yourself by the apparent hardship.
Remember to discriminate events themselves and your interpretations of them.
It is not a demonstration of kindness or friendship to the people we care about to join them
in surrendering to negative feelings. We do a better service to ourselves and others
by remaining detached and avoiding unnecessary emotional reactions.
Still, if you are associated with someone who is depressed, stressed or hurt, show them kindness
and give them a sympathetic ear; just don’t allow yourself to be pulled down.

2. Stress is detrimental to Sperm.
Stress can and will seep into every facet of your life if you let it, including the bedroom.
Stressed men are found to have fewer, slower sperm, which can diminish fertility.
While not conclusive yet as to how stress affects the quality of semen, it is possible that stress
may trigger steroid hormones known to blunt levels of testosterone and sperm production.

3. Two stressed people equals less stress.
Seems counterintuitive, yes. But, when especially stressed, it is extremely helpful to 
share your feelings with someone who is having a similar anxious reaction to the same situation.
Consider giving a presentation at work – perhaps nothing will ease your stress more than talking it out with a colleague who is undergoing the same scenario. Studies show that there is tremendous benefit gained by conversing with others whose emotional response is in line with your own.

4. Optimists are better at regulating stress.
A glass-half-full mentality may be the ticket to a more stress-free life.
The “stress hormone” cortisol tends to be more stable for those with positive personalities. 
Pessimists have difficulty regulating their emotional and physical responses to particularly stressful situations. Optimists tend to be more solution-oriented and thus better react to the stress hormone – allowing it to amplify their get-up-and-go attitudes.

5. Not all stress is bad.
While stress is oftentimes the enemy, we can’t ignore its ability to push us to optimal alertness
and performance. Short, but significant bouts of stress cause our brains to proliferate new nerve cells that improve mental performance. Stress hormones are an incredible adaptation that provide us with the ability to remember not only anxiety-ridden situations themselves, but more importantly, how will dealt with them – ingraining us with the power of resiliency, allowing us to be ready for whatever life may throw our way. Like most things in life, stress is only beneficial in small doses. Chronic stress leads to increased risk of 
chronic obesity, heart disease and depression.

Stress is like spice - in the right proportion it enhances the flavor of a dish.
Too little produces a bland, dull meal; too much may choke you."  Donald Tubesing

Rajeev Kurapati, MD, is a Physician

Perhaps you’d like to check out my sister blogs:               this takes advantage of the experience and expertise of others.   describes the steps to reading in the way your mind prefers.        just for fun.

To quote the Dr Seuss himself, “The more that you read, the more things you will know.
The more that you learn; the more places you'll go.”

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