Relieve Stress and Achieve Success

 Lewis Hunter,  June 4, 2019



We all deal with a certain level of stress in our daily lives, whether it’s sitting in traffic when we’re

running late, trying to meet deadlines at work, or struggling with issues in a personal

relationship. But that’s just part of life, isn’t it? Stress is our body’s natural reaction to a situation

that seems to be more than we can handle.

When we get “stressed out” our adrenal glands secrete cortisol into our bloodstream. Cortisol

plays a vital role in our body’s overall functioning. It helps control things like blood sugar,

metabolism, blood pressure, and inflammation.

This was very helpful back when we were defending our cave from a saber tooth tiger, but when

someone pulls out in front of you and hits their brakes, all that extra cortisol swimming around in

your system doesn’t really help much.

After a stressful event is over, it’s important that the body’s relaxation response be activated so

the body’s functions can return to normal, but in our high-stress culture, the body’s stress

response is activated so often that the body doesn’t always have a chance to return to normal.

Higher and prolonged levels of cortisol in the bloodstream can have negative effects like

impaired cognitive performance, high blood pressure, blood sugar imbalance, and suppressed

thyroid function. So most of us are walking around with our adrenal glands pumping out cortisol

like there’s no tomorrow, and it’s not just affecting us mentally, it’s hurting us physically too.

According to the Journal of American Medical Association (JAMA), too much stress can be as

bad for your heart as smoking and high cholesterol, and from her book “The Holistic Rx” Dr.

Madiha Saeed says that stress causes more than 80% of the complaints that patients present to

their doctors, as it can exacerbate any chronic illness.

I know by now your thinking, “I get it, we’re all stressed out! But what can I do about it?” I’m

about to tell you, and you’re going to like it... Get a Massage.

Massage helps to increase the circulation of both the blood and the lymphatic system, bringing

oxygen and nutrients to your muscles, organs, and other tissues. Massage enhances your

health and well-being by eliminating muscle spasms and trigger points and improves relaxation

and loosening of stiff joints.


A massage lasting as little as twenty minutes can lead to a significant reduction in blood

pressure, anxiety, resting heart rate, and cortisol levels. So not only does massage relieve your

stress, it loosens up all the tension created by being stressed out all the time. Massage can also

help you sleep more deeply and a good night’s sleep is vital to maintaining good health.

During sleep, there is a lot going on in our bodies. Cells are being repaired and hormones are

being secreted, hormones that regulate things like metabolism, immune function, and glucose

processing. If you don’t get enough deep sleep to allow these essential functions to take place,

guess what hormone your body will secrete instead...

Yep, cortisol. That’s because your body thinks that the reason you are not sleeping deeply is

there must be something wrong like perhaps you’re still dealing with that pesky saber tooth

tiger.

Massage also improves your attention and ability to focus. That’s because it’s hard to pay

attention when your heart rate is elevated. When you get a massage your nervous system slows

down. Pressure receptors send signals to the brain, then the brain sends signals through the

vagus nerve to the heart, lowering your resting heart rate.

With your heart rate lowered, you will be more calm and focused. Sometimes you need to stop

thinking and relax to solve a problem. If you are fixated on an issue it’s like you have on blinders

and may not be able to see the big picture.

By bringing mental clarity, massage can bring buried thoughts and ideas to the surface and help

you be more creative. The best ideas always come when you are not trying to think of them, and

many business executives have come to this realization and now consider massage an

essential part of their success strategy.

Just getting a massage once a month is going to give you a serious edge at work. While

everyone else is walking around in a stress-induced stupor, you will be relaxed, focused, and

productive.

Managing the stress in your life will make you healthier and happier which will lead to a more

positive mindset, and when you have a positive mindset, you can achieve success.

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