The state of our emotions affects the levels of inflammation in our bodies. Stress is a problem because stress is an inflammatory emotion.
Everyone kinda knows that stress is a problem. But most people do not know where emotions come from and thus are making the grave mistake of indulging in inflammatory emotions.
Stress, as an emotion, is similar to worry, overwhelm and anxious. These are all indulgent emotions. They seem to be important and worthy of feeling, but actually they are useless and harmful.
And they are very easy emotions to get stuck in, spinning and spinning in our heads, kicking up our cortisol levels on repeat.
Where Stress Does NOT Come From
We so often blame the world for our stress: an event, our job, or someone else in our life. We think: IF only they would change our stress would change.
We think that our lives are just too stressful and that we feel that we are at the effect of the world causing our stress.
What is true about Stress:
Stress comes from our thoughts, the way we are thinking about the world, the event, the job, or the person.
Thinking something should or should not be as it is, creates stress.
Arguing with reality, creates stress.
Trying to change another person, creates stress.
The thoughts that you have about your job, creates stress.
Trying to control anything outside of you is exhausting and pointless… and stressful.
How to Manage Stress
Learning how to manage your mind, your brain, and your thoughts are how to manage your stress.
Tell a new story, shift a perspective, watch the thoughts, and catch ourselves from going down a stress rabbit hole.
The Problems with Stress
Indulging in thoughts that cause stress is like holding a hot skillet and not putting it down. We are literally burning ourselves with stress.
Stress causes inflammation: heat, pain, redness, swelling, loss of function. This is a list of medical physical symptoms, but they are also emotional symptoms of stress.
Our Brain on Stress
An unmanaged brain will endlessly indulge in stress, worry and overwhelm.
Stress, unmanaged becomes chronic stress and becomes a serious problem.
Stress, managed, is done by managing your brain.
What if you are like many of my clients who believe that stress is useful?
I offer you this… try on another emotion like focus, commitment, productive, empowered, or confident. Then use this emotion to get things done in your life. I promise you that you will get far more done and have far less inflammation.
…The problem is that stress is familiar; switching up anything familiar is challenged by our brain’s drive for familiarity.