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How Does Stress Affect Your Lifestyle?


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You always hear people talking about stress, how stressed out they are, and how much stress is involved in daily life. Although this is a word that many people use so casually, the reality is that stress can have some really major impact on your life, and not in a positive way.

Stress is well known for having a wide variety of negative physical and mental health effects, and these are very real. Some people might think that the symptoms that people suffer due to stress are simply imaginary, but this just isn't the case.

When you feel stressed out, it affects your lifestyle, and it can greatly affect your mental and physical state and other parts of your life. 

Today, we want to figure out how exactly stress affects your lifestyle and how you can eliminate some of that stress. 

 

Key Takeaways

  • Stress may be caused by a variety of internal and external factors.
  • Stress may manifest itself in potential physical, mental, and behavioral ways.
  • Stress relief is possible through a variety of means.

 

Common Effects of Stress on Your Body

Although stress might appear to be solely mental or mood-related, the fact is that in many people, stress has physical manifestations, or in other words, it can change the way you feel physically for the worse. 

Let's find out what some of the most common effects on your body are when you're under a lot of stress.

Headaches

When stressed out, many people may start developing headaches of various degrees, whether light headaches or serious migraines. Those people who are already prone to suffering from headaches or migraines may feel that their headaches increase in both intensity and severity. 

Stress can quite literally make you feel pain.

Muscle Tension

If you are overly stressed out, another physical manifestation may be muscle tension. If you're very stressed out, it could cause your muscles to become extremely tense because you're always squeezing them together, with muscle tension having other negative consequences. 

For instance, in some cases, extreme muscle tension can lead to headaches, back aches, and muscle pains of all sorts.

Muscle Pain

Although exactly why stress can cause muscle pain is up for debate, it is the case that many people report feeling this exact symptom. It may be the case that the human body physically manifests stress as pain in a random part of the body.

It might also be the case that all of the physical muscle tension you're experiencing eventually causes those same muscles to become tired, fatigued, and painful. If you're always putting your muscles under tension, it might be like you're working them out, literally tiring them out in the process.

Digestive Issues

Many people also report that high levels of stress lead to digestive issues. Stress may affect the human body's digestive system, which may lead to nausea, stomach aches, diarrhea, and other related gastrointestinal issues. 

Chest Pain

In some people, there is the potential that elevated levels of stress could cause chest pain. It may also be the case that high stress levels may increase the blood pressure in your arteries while also significantly increasing your heart rate. Stress may be related to cardiovascular disease, which is extremely dangerous in the long run.

Missed Periods

Interesting to note is that high levels of stress may relate to changing hormones, which could cause changes in the menstrual cycle. In some anecdotal cases, women report that their period schedules change or even that they totally miss their period when they're feeling very stressed out.

Change in Sex Drive

If you are always feeling stressed out, chances are that you're not going to be thinking about having any kind of sexual relations. Furthermore, it could also be that stress could affect a variety of hormones that reduce your sex drive.

Feeling Fatigued

The other common bodily effect of stress that you may feel is feeling fatigued. When you're constantly stressed out, your body and your mind are working on overdrive. Your muscles are tense, your hormones are likely fluctuating, and you just don't feel good in general. 

 

Common Effects of Stress on Your Mood

Not only can stress have physical manifestations on your body, but it may also affect your mood and your mental state. Let's find out exactly how this is the case.

Feeling Anxiety

If you are always feeling stressed out, it may also lead to increased feelings of anxiety or symptoms related to anxiety. 

If you're constantly stressed out, chances are you've got a lot of cortisol flowing through your system, and cortisol keeps you alert and in a heightened state of stress. 

Stress and anxiety would appear to be closely related, so it makes sense that if you're always stressed out, you might also be a bit anxious.

Learn how to reduce cortisol naturally, and what some of the best herbs for cortisol are.

Sense of Restlessness

If you are always stressed out, you just feel really restless. If you're stressed out, it means that your mind can't stop racing, and you can't stop thinking about the problems in your life. 

This can make you very restless and unable to concentrate on anything at all. Whether you want to watch TV, read a book, or get some work done, this can be very difficult if all you can think about is all of that stress in your life.

More Easily Irritable or Angry

Perhaps one of the most common effects of stress on people's moods is that they end up feeling much angrier and more easily irritable. 

When people feel stressed out, they don't think as they usually would, and they react in ways that are uncharacteristic of them.

General Feeling of Being Overwhelmed

If you're feeling super stressed out, there might also be a sense of feeling overwhelmed. These two things seem to go hand in hand because there are various factors in your life that cause stress. 

Stress doesn't just appear on its own if you feel stressed out; it is all of the little things in your life that are overwhelming you. 

The sad reality is that this is kind of a cycle because if you feel stressed out, it might lead to you feeling overwhelmed, and if you feel overwhelmed, it will likely lead to more stress.

Lack of Motivation or Focus

Yet another one of the biggest effects that stress has on your mood and mental state is that it may reduce your ability to focus, and it may also reduce your overall motivation.

If all you can do is focus on your stress, how could you focus on work, school, or anything else? 

The simple reality is that if you're so stressed out that all you're doing is thinking about your problems, you'll probably not be very motivated to do anything else productive.

Sadness

The other mental effect that stress may have on your life is quite simply that you'll feel sad and might experience symptoms related to depression. Being stressed out is just really hard, and over a prolonged period of time, that can really affect your mental state.

 

Common Effects of Stress on Your Behavior

Now that we know exactly how stress might affect both your body and mind let's take a quick look at the common effects that stress has on your behavior. 

Lack of Appetite or Overeating

One of the most common effects of stress on your behavior is a change in appetite. Exactly how you react, or if you react in this way at all, depends on you and your level of stress. 

However, it's not uncommon that some people may stop eating when they feel very stressed out because they just can't think about food. 

On the other hand, it would appear that some people try to eat their feelings away, or in other words, start overeating, possibly to just try and forget about the stress.

Misuse of Substances

When some people are stressed out, they may turn to drugs and other illicit substances. There are many drugs out there that can, in the moment, make you feel much happier, better, and relaxed. 

Of course, this is nothing more than a momentary illusion because, as is the case with drugs, you always need more of them to achieve that same good feeling, and in the long run, drugs negatively affect both your mind and body.

Increased Outward Anger

In some cases, when people feel stressed out, they may also exhibit increased outward anger. People may just be generally grumpy or have angry outbursts at times when it would seem uncalled for. Stress can make people behave in very odd ways.

Withdrawn Socially

Yet another effect that stress may have on your behavior has to do with your social life. If you're constantly feeling super stressed out, overwhelmed, and like the world is about to crush you, then chances are that you're probably not really thinking about being social or hanging out with your friends. 

That's all just too much to think about when your stress has taken over.

Less Motivation to be Physically Active

What's funny to note is that exercise is supposed to be really good for relieving stress, but when some people feel stressed out, they may actually be less physically active. 

As mentioned above, stress may take away your motivation, which also includes your motivation to exercise. This is, of course, very bad because exercise is good for not only your mental health but also your physical health.

Central Nervous System and the Endocrine System: Fight or Flight

When you feel stressed out, it may also affect your endocrine and central nervous systems. These are what make up the fight-or-flight response. 

If you're always stressed out, it might cause your body to be in a constant state of heightened alert, or in other words, you'll always experience your fight or flight instincts. This can cause you to behave in very odd ways.

 

How to Change Lifestyle to Reduce Stress

Now that we know how stress may affect your mind, body, and behavior, let's talk about some great ways to change your lifestyle so you can reduce some of that stress.

Progressive Muscle Relaxation

One great way to try and relieve stress is known as progressive muscle relaxation. This is the practice of attempting to relax all the muscles in your body, one group after the other. 

To be specific, the aim here is to tighten and tense up all of your muscles as hard as you can, one muscle group at a time, and then release all of that tension, one at a time.

This should have the effect of allowing you to recognize all of the tightness and tension in your muscles. Moreover, you should feel an overwhelming sense of relaxation every time you release the muscles after tightening them. 

In other words, you're comparing the feeling of your relaxed muscles to the feeling of your tight muscles.

Is Progressive Muscle Relaxation Mindfulness?

For those of you who don't know, mindfulness is a practice often employed in yoga. It is designed to make you look inwards and reflect on your emotions and life. It's about being aware of your own feelings and thoughts.

Progressive muscle relaxation could technically be viewed as a form of mindfulness. Although you aren't looking at your feelings, you are looking inwards to examine exactly how you feel, and in this case, you're looking at how your muscles feel physically.

Guided Imagery Meditation

Guided imagery is another very interesting practice that may have the ability to relieve stress. In simplest terms, guided imagery involves going to what most people would call your happy place, almost like taking a little vacation right in your own mind.

Here, you might picture yourself sitting in a beautiful rainforest, on a beach, or feeling the sun's warmth on your face.

Whatever the case may be, the point here is for you to imagine something enjoyable and relaxing that can help melt your stress away.

Guided imagery meditation can be done using a real-life guide, or you can do it using some kind of recording. It's all about experiencing a peaceful scene in your mind.

How Does Guided Imagery Reduce Stress?

Guided imagery reduces stress by having you focus on the happy parts of your life, whether they're real or not.

It’s all about living in the moment, focusing on your dreams and those things that make you feel good while completely blocking out and forgetting about all of the stress in your life.

Stress Relief Meditation

If you're feeling super stressed out, something else you may want to try is meditation. Meditation is another one of these classic staples of yoga, and for good reason, because it may indeed help reduce stress.

Meditation might involve simple mindfulness and you looking inwards, it could involve you developing and repeating a mantra to yourself, and it could even include some kind of guided imagery as well.

Whatever the case may be, meditation may very well help relieve some stress.

Guided Breathing for Stress

Another great way to get rid of some of the stress in your life is by engaging in what is known as guided breathing. Guided breathing is when someone instructs you how to breathe, whether a real-life person or a recording.

There are various different breathing techniques out there that may help reduce symptoms related to stress, anxiety, and depression. Breathing techniques generally force you to focus on nothing else but your breathing, therefore blocking out the stress in your life.

Walking for Stress Relief

If all else fails, maybe a bit of walking and exercise could be the answer you need to relieve some of that stress. Going for a walk allows you to focus on Mother Nature and the things you see around you, as opposed to simply stressing out about your life. 

Even better is the fact that exercise can indeed help relieve symptoms associated with stress, mainly due to the beneficial hormones and brain chemicals that exercise produces.

Positive Self Talk

Something else you might want to try to help reduce stress is known as positive self-talk. This is when you develop various mantras to repeat yourself with positive messages. 

The main point here is for you to actively tell yourself that you shouldn't be so stressed out, and to focus on the things that make you happy.

Aromatherapy for Stress

The other recommendation we have to help reduce your levels of stress is aromatherapy. There are different scents and chemicals out there, as well as terpenes, that may alter the way your brain functions. 

It may be the case that certain scents may change the way your brain works in terms of the hormones and brain chemicals it produces. Altering hormones and chemicals in your brain may lead to stress reduction.

 

Combating Stress with Supplements

Another way you can try to combat all of the stress in your life is by using supplements. There are many supplements out there that may have the ability to affect your stress levels in a positive way.

Some supplements may produce a sedating effect that makes you feel slightly more tired and relaxed. Other supplements may change the way your brain functions in terms of hormone production, especially where serotonin and dopamine are concerned.

One of the supplements we recommend on this front is TUNE IN. This supplement is made with various potentially beneficial and stress-relieving ingredients like lion’s mane, cordyceps, ashwagandha extract, Rhodiola rosea root extract, alpha GPC, and more! 

In their own ways, each of the ingredients has the potential to relieve symptoms associated with stress. These ingredients have many other potential benefits as well, such as providing you with more energy throughout the day, and possibly increasing your cognitive abilities, such as focus and memory.

 

Final Thoughts

The bottom line is that stress is much more dangerous than some people would like to think. Stress can have many potential negative health effects for the mind and body. 

Moreover, stress may even change how you act in your daily life. Therefore, we highly recommend taking advantage of the various solutions and tips we've provided you above, because at least one should help you relieve your stress.

 

How Does Stress Affect Your Lifestyle: FAQs

How Stress Affects Your Daily Life?

Stress can have very negative impacts on your physical and mental health, as well as your behavior.

What is Stress in Lifestyle?

Stress can come from many different aspects, whether your family, children, work, school, financial issues, mental health issues, or otherwise.

What is Affected in Your Life When You’re Stressed Out?

Generally speaking, when you are stressed out, everything in your life is affected. This may include your mind, your body, your behavior, your social relationships, your job, education, and more.

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Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment and before undertaking a new healthcare regimen. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.

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