The Stress Response – Hypnotherapy in Ely and Newmarket

Dec 14, 2023 | Anxiety Stress and Panic Attacks | 0 comments

stress response - anxiety hypnotherapy in ely

 

The Stress Response – Hypnotherapy in Ely and Newmarket

The stress response can have a massive negative impact upon your thoughts and feelings. When it feels as though the demands upon you are too great to cope with, you can easily start to spiral into a cycle of negativity and stress. And when your stress just seems to run and run, it can impact upon you detrimentally and start to weave into all the other aspects of your life too.

The stress response evolved to help us to navigate immediate and external threats and dangers.  Stress hormones mobilise your resources for action. Blood and oxygen is directed to your muscles, adrenaline is released, your heart beats faster and you are ready to deal with the threat through fleeing or fighting. And although this is helpful when there is an immediate danger to deal with and where you need to act quickly, it can be less helpful when seeking to manage your life and to deal with more modern challenges.

And many of these modern challenges can come from things like relationships, other people, employment and other things that can be ongoing over a much longer period than out stress response system was designed to deal with. In many cases, it can be our own thoughts, perceptions, expectations and thinking patterns that stress us out and lead to endless worrying. And dealing with things over the longer term and that continually fire off your stress response can be pretty exhausting (mentally and physically).

The negative effects of stress can lead to a range of physical issues such as exhaustion, burnout, digestive problems and high blood pressure. You might feel overwhelmed, anxious, tense and struggle to think clearly or to make decisions. And, as a result of the physical depletion and mental fog, you will start to struggle with sleeping and healthy eating, and you might feel angry, apathetic and start to avoid things you usually enjoy. And, of course, all of these things just add to your stress load, making you feel even worse.

Yet no matter how much your stress response is negatively impacting right now, it is very possible to take back control over your thoughts and feelings. You can feel calm and more confident as you orchestrate your own internal thinking and feeling patterns and as you deal with whatever external challenges and problems may come your way.

 

The Stress Response in Modern Life

There are many ways in which the stress response can be unhelpful in modern life. Generally these arise because the stress response evolved for dealing with short term, immediate, external threats of harm, whereas modern stress can be more long term and a response to internally generated signs of threat (based upon your own thinking, imagination, biases and perception).

One unhelpful aspect of the stress response is that it can inhibit your ability to think clearly and logically about a situation. You are more likely to view things in black or white, emotional terms. This makes it harder to find solutions to help alleviate the stressful situation and the stressful thoughts and feelings continue. You struggle to make decisions, plan or find solutions and you continue to feel stressed. This can then impact on things such as your mood, energy levels and sleep and so make it even harder for you to try to cope with the stress (and you also may find that in this stressed state even more things in life create stress and add to your negative thoughts and feelings).

In addition to these reasons, your instinctive stress responses of ‘fight or flight’ (putting freeze, faint or fidget to one side) can lead to responses that create even more stress and anxiety. For example, avoiding people or situations that you perceive as responsible for your stress can create work and social issues. The stressful thoughts, feelings and emotions continue through rumination, overthinking and dwelling and there is no opportunity for things to be resolved or for learning to take place and so the stress continues. On the flip side, an angry response, particularly in the workplace or in relationships, can lead to even more issues and conflict arising, again exacerbating rather than alleviating those stressful thoughts and feelings.

For many people, their coping strategy for stress is to turn to increased smoking, drinking or eating. All of these can impact upon your health (creating health related stress), lower self-esteem (potentially adding to low mood and a sense of a lack of control) and can impact upon work performance and social interactions (e.g. the after effects of the previous nights alcohol can impair work performance and the ability to think clearly and to make decisions).

Now, some people claim to thrive on stress and, in short bursts, that may be so, for example, where they need to get something done by a deadline. Yet we can probably more accurately call this dealing with pressure rather than being a problematic, acute stress response issue.

 

Stress or Pressure?

There are some big differences between circumstances that create acute stress and those that lead to a sense of pressure. Acute stress refers to a short term period of negative stress, whereas pressure is regarded as more positive stress and can continue over a longer period. Whereas pressure can contribute to personal growth and increased confidence as you work to tackle a challenge (that you feel capable of tackling), acute stress can be thought of more as something demanding where you may doubt your own ability and personal resources to get it done.

The end outcome is also key here when thinking about acute stress and pressure. With pressure, having completed the challenge, you are likely to feel more resourceful and more positive and you may experience a boost to your self-esteem and a sense of accomplishment. You faced a challenge that stretched you and you have developed in some way as a result. With acute stress, you may experience negative thoughts and feelings whilst dealing with the short terms demands upon you, and it is probably more likely just a sense of relief once the thing is completed. There is the positive motivation of pressure as opposed to the negative burden of acute stress.

Of course, what constitutes either pressure or acute stress will, for each, come down to a personal evaluation of the stressful situation and a self evaluation of personal motivations and resources to get whatever it is done.

 

Dealing with Stress

When your stress response is frequently causing you negative thoughts and feelings then it is time to take some effective action.

Stress can easily start to negatively effect your thoughts, feelings, emotions and behaviours in ways that make you feel worse and worse. You may feel anxious, depressed, overwhelmed and on edge. You can struggle to think clearly, make decisions and plan things. You may feel like you have no control over your life, or you may start to try and take control over every small detail. You struggle to relax and switch off. And there can be impacts on your motivation, enthusiasm and general energy levels. Your sleep is disrupted, your eating and drinking habits can change and, all in all, you feel burnt out, lost and exhausted. If your stress has been going on along time then it may seem like there is no light at the end of the tunnel.

Stress clouds your mood and mindset, you feel like you are carrying a weight on your shoulders and you struggle to take a grip over your own thoughts and feelings. There are always more and more things to do and dealing with everything feels like an impossible mission. Your stress bucket is overflowing and there may seem like no way to turn off the tap.

However, hypnotherapy can help by calming the emotions and stress that you have been experiencing. This means you can start to feel more relaxed and think more clearly. You can evaluate things more logically and you can think about what you need to do, develop constructive solutions and find a way forward.  By strengthening your levels of calmness, confidence and self-esteem, you can feel strong and resilient enough to take action to address the things around you, and to direct your own thoughts, feelings, actions and reactions. You find yourself able to deal with people, place, time and situation in a more empowered, calm, encouraging and self assured fashion.

And that will mean that through your hypnotherapy sessions you reign in, dilute and manage the challenges that come your way while feeling better and better in yourself.

To your health and happiness,

Dan Regan

Hypnotherapy in Ely & Newmarket

 

Struggling with anxiety, stress, worry and fear and need some help? Find out how I can help with a Complimentary Hypnotherapy Strategy Session. Learn more here: Appointments

Find out what many, many other people have said after their hypnotherapy sessions with Dan: Hypnotherapy Testimonials

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