We all experience stress because it is part of the human survival response. Stress is not the bad guy entirely. In small and short doses, stress is actually necessary to stay focused, motivated, and productive. Stress allows us to act when it’s important to do so, whether to accomplish a goal or protect ourselves from imminent danger. If we didn’t experience stress, we would not accomplish very much in life and would struggle to keep ourselves out of harm’s way. In short…we need to maintain a certain level of stress to get stuff done and stay safe.
However, in today’s complex modern era where survival is not at stake during most waking moments. We are instead bombarded with a multitude of life stressors…traffic, bills, work, school, relationship conflict, etc. Many of which we cannot take immediate action to “accomplish” or “survive” and get the relief from stress. So, we end up stuck in chronic states of stress triggered by all the life stuff we cannot fix, control, or escape in the moment.
Then there is anxiety we have to factor in…as if being stressed daily wasn’t enough! Anxiety will repeatedly activate the stress response by having us worry about the future, ruminating on the past, and focusing on the negative aspects of the present moment. It also has us perseverate on the most common existential fears… failing and ending up alone. No wonder so many of us are stressed and anxious in our lives! But there is hope…
At Straight Up Treatment, we help conquer stress by teaching individuals how to take action and control over it. The first step to getting more control over stress is to identify all of the things in your life that trigger it. Getting a better understanding and building awareness around how your mind and body react when stressed is also important.
We use evidenced-based CBT interventions to explore and change the relationship between triggers, thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. We empower people to control what they have control over in life…what we focus on, what choices we make during stressful moments, and living a life based on personal values.
We also use techniques like attentional training, HRV biofeedback, and strategic breathing retraining to rebalance the nervous system from the negative effects of chronic states of stress.
You can read more about anxiety and stress here.
Stress becomes problematic when a person is frequently feeling overwhelmed or “defeated” and feeling unequipped to manage those things that trigger stress.
Some individuals also start to experience anxiety and worry along with stress. If stress has become chronic, it can also negatively impact your health and immune system functioning, often resulting in physical symptoms like GI issues, recurrent sickness/flu/colds, etc.
If stress is holding you back in some way and interfering with you achieving your goals or enjoying life, then you may want to get some help in how to better manage it – click here now!