Feeling stressed is something we all experience from time to time. For some of us, however, it’s a recurring problem that, over time, can seriously impact our health and well-being.
A Life Coach can help support you with stress management, offering guidance and insight to help you cope with stress better and teach you how to develop your emotional resilience. Understanding what is causing you to feel stressed means you can change habits, narrative and behaviors that lead to the stress. Your coach will guide you through these changes, offering support the entire way.
As a Coach, the aim is to offer you a safe space without judgment for reflection and clarity, to help you understand the root causes, rather than to ‘fix’ the symptoms. Instead, we help you come up with strategies and coping techniques to reduce stress when it arises. This may include learning how to set boundaries, learning relaxation skills, journaling, breathing techniques or meditation.
My personal meditation journey is a daily practice that has been in place for several years. It’s most definitely a “go-to” tool for me when I’m stressed, and I’d like to focus a little on meditation here.
For many people dealing with high levels of stress, it can be hard to comprehend how a few moments of meditation can help. After all, when you’ve finished meditation, the stressors are still there — you’re still dealing with unpaid bills, getting divorced, caring for ailing parents, struggling with the demands of a high-stress job, or trying to find a job. How can a few moments of deep thought possibly help?
However, it is scientifically proven that meditation does reduce stress by decreasing the stress hormone cortisol. When we have too much cortisol streaming through our bodies it disrupts sleep, causes depression and anxiety, increases blood pressure, contributes to fatigue and many other more serious stress-related conditions.
Think of it this way – your mind is like an emotional muscle. Like any other muscle in your body, over exercising it leads to injury. Like any other muscle in your body, your mind requires rest to regenerate and come back stronger than before. Your brain, emotions and your body need moments of recovery to get stronger from stress.
Think of meditation like high-intensity interval training for the brain. During H.I.I.T., you go as hard as you can, then you give yourself a few minutes of recovery before returning to the exercise. This cycle is repeated multiple times and has been shown to be more effective for building strength than long, slow bouts of exercise. You are typically giving your brain a high-intensity, high-stress workout every day! It is important to take some time to let your brain recover. From recovery comes performance and growth.
There are so many different types of meditation available to us these days, whether its seated, lying down, movement – there’s a style for everyone, and so accessible with many videos on YouTube, Meditation Apps etc. I encourage you to explore a little, and find a meditation method that you enjoy, that helps lessen your stress and instead brings some peace, calm and balance to your life.