How does stress affect your body?
Do you get back pain? Headaches and migraines? Skin problems? Weight gain? Weight loss? Funky inflammation to all parts of your body? Don’t ignore your body – listen to it! It’s telling you something.
I’d like to share with you how sleep stress affected my body when I first became a father.
Stress = ‘Your body’s reaction to change’.
Stress is therefore positive and negative in its effect on the body.
Any movement from a state of health and balance to a state away from what you consider to be healthy for yourself, indicates that your body is under a form of negative stress.
Everybody’s body exhibits stress in different ways.
I’m sure you have friends that live similar lives to you, eat similar foods, participate in the same sports as you and have the same general stressors as you. I’m sure you also find that those same people’s bodies might react totally differently to your body when it comes to body shape, pain levels and general health.
Let me share with you my own story of a stressful inflammatory issue I was having with my face. Check out the photo!
I was waking up with lips that felt like I’d been stung like a bee! It was so uncomfortable and embarrassing to say the least. For the first time in a long time I was having to cancel / reschedule clients to avoid seeing them! This continued on for around 8 months or more to my lips, cheeks and even eyes, hands and feet! So what’s it called? Who cares what it’s called! No need to box myself in as having a syndrome or disorder so as to make me think I was a slave to it. Quite simply, my body was under STRESS. Higher amounts of negative stress than what my body liked. I was creating an inflammatory response in my face to deal with something affecting my body at that current time in my life. My body did not have a lack of Benadryl or some other pharmaceutical ingredient needed to reduce inflammation. It lacked attention to what I was putting my body through.
What was happening during that time in my life? What was the ‘change’ occurring that created such a reaction?
My first year of fatherhood. Severe lack of consistent sleep. Within our Primal 6 philosophy of health, SLEEP is the 6th key. After so many months not getting a full nights sleep, my body was trying to talk to me and get my attention. It sure did.
From a physiological perspective, my pineal gland was crying out for help. As we explain to our clients, the external part of your body tends to be a reflection of the underlying internal parts of your body due to the close association of nerves and hormones that service the same area. Hence my lips and face were a reflection of the Pineal gland that resides in my brain. From an Eastern perspective, my 6th Chakra or third-eye was pissed off!
The answer was simple to me but not so easy. Get more sleep!! My daughter wasn’t quite sleeping solidly though each and every night. Even if she woke up for 5 min at 2 am, that sleep interruption would sometimes keep me up for hours before I could drift off again. My brain would switch on and I’d start thinking about work and anything on my mind at the time. Therefore, my sympathetic nervous system was always working overtime and producing way too much cortisol, stimulating me to stay awake. So in order to change this I’d go to bed a lot earlier, have power naps in the day and then in the very end when was I was desperate, slept on the massage table at work! It finally worked. I became human again, was a lot less stressed and so was my daughter who is very susceptible to change based on her parent’s stress levels. Less stress with daddy meant less stress with Kaiya, so she slept better, then so did I.
To summarise, my message is this:
Don’t ignore your body’s stress signals. The answer is not a pill for an ill.
Everything happens to your body for a reason whether it’s from a physical, emotional or spiritual standpoint. Don’t wait for the next prescription of pills. Reduce your stress levels and your body will thank you by feeling good.