How to eliminate stress from your life

In honour of World Mental Health Day, Liminal Health coach Marie Wright discusses the impact of stress on your health and how to better manage it in everyday life.

Noticing the physiological response to stress in your body

Do you ever stop and notice how stressed you feel? Or maybe like I did, you carry stress around like an extra arm, simply a part of you that you aren’t even aware of a lot of the time; we are so used to it being a normal part of our everyday lives.

I wonder if right now if you stopped in stillness to explore with curiosity and no judgement, whether you are carrying any stress in your body, what you would find. Most of us feel stress in a physiological way. For example, you may notice that you feel it as tension across your neck and shoulders, or a fluttering in your stomach, or perhaps as a headache behind your eyes. We are all different and can experience it in various ways. The key is to be aware of where you feel it in your body, and to become attuned to noticing it, so that you can begin to eliminate it.

Stress hinders us

Stress is never healthy, despite what you may have been led to believe. Some people think that stress helps them get stuff done and achieve their goals. This is not true. Stress is the cause of so much disease and illness, and we are perfectly capable of achieving great things without it. In fact, I would argue that, we are way more productive and successful without stress because then we are ‘in flow’ and ‘in the zone’, feeling at ease and without any blocks to our creativity. Stress hinders our clarity and ability to access our deep and inner wisdom, that we all have within us. When we are calm and peaceful, we are able to listen to and act upon this inner wisdom.

“Stress hinders our clarity and ability to access our deep and inner wisdom, that we all have within us. When we are calm and peaceful, we are able to listen to and act upon this inner wisdom. .”

Marie Wright, Liminal Health Coach

Stress and cancer

When you are facing a cancer diagnosis, it becomes even more important to try and eliminate stress from your life, even though the diagnosis and illness in itself can cause you to feel stressed, and then thinking that the stress you feel is going to make things worse, creates even more pressure. According to Anil K Sood, M.D,. Professor of Gynaecologic Oncology and Reproductive Medicine as MD Anderson, not all stresses are equal. For example, short-term stress, such as preparing for surgery, isn’t as damaging as long-term chronic stress, which can ultimately weaken your immune system (1).

So, what do you do? Of course, it’s vitally important to acknowledge your feelings when facing cancer, and it’s completely natural to feel upset, scared, angry or sad. But if you can learn to adjust your thinking and emotional response over the long term, it is possible to reduce and even eliminate the stress, even when waiting for the results of scans, as well as the fear of a recurrence of cancer, once you have been given the all clear.

So, how do you eliminate stress?

Once you have noticed the physical symptoms of stress, how do you let it go? The answer is a very simple one, but not necessarily easy to do. It does require awareness and practice, but once you have mastered it, the results are transformational.

Firstly, you decide that you don’t want to feel stressed any more. You simply draw a line in the sand and set an intention that stress will no longer be part of your life.

Then, having made a mental note of where you feel your stress, next time you notice that physiological reaction, remind yourself of your intention not to feel stressed any more.

Then remember the following. Stress is not caused by external circumstances even though it feels like it is. Stress is your own response to external circumstances and is caused by your own thinking about those circumstances. It is your thinking that causes the stress, and not the actual external circumstance or event.

We have thoughts, we create thinking out of those thoughts, which in turn causes us to feel certain emotions, which determine our behaviour, which in turns results in a particular outcome.

Creating powerful thinking

The good news is that we all have the power to create our own thinking, and in turn, how we feel, how we respond and behave, and ultimately the outcome. This is called the gift of free will, and if we exercise that gift in a powerful way, free from our insecure thoughts, we can eliminate stress from our lives, no matter what the external circumstances that are happening around us, and the events out of our control. This puts us in the driving seat of our lives. We cannot control our external circumstances, but we can create our thinking in a powerful way so that we genuinely feel calm regardless of the drama and mayhem around us. To do this requires a quiet mind, free from the critical voices in your head. It does take practice, but once you master it, it is a beautiful feeling.

I challenge you to give it a go. It really is life changing. And if you’d like to learn more about how to eliminate stress from your life, register for a free 30 minute initial session with Liminal Health to find out how we can help you.

Author: Marie Wright, Liminal Health Coach

Author: Marie Wright, Liminal Health Coach

Marie is a Transformation and Mindset Coach with Liminal Health. She has a passion for supporting people to create a strong mindset, so that one has absolute clarity, peace of mind and a real sense of inner calm despite the challenges one is facing in life.

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