Don't own stress!


Now we're talking inevitable, we're talking about a real problem. Stress isn't in your mind-stress is real. It's a physical response to external stimuli-need I give examples?

From the moment we wake up with that nettling alarm in the morning to the moment we unsettling-ly settle in bed every night, each moment is stressful. We all hate the slow traffic, running late for meetings, printer not working, ipads and laptops crashing, waiting for customer care to respond, a meeting that got cancelled at the last minute, a promotion that didn't happen, etc. Our lives are compartmentalized with the things we 'need' to get done 'on time'.

Stress and weight loss

In Health Coaching, one of the most common problem I hear from people is that they don't lose weight. More often than not, I realize these clients are under constant stress. Constant stress could also cause jitters, spasms, cravings, over-eating, under-eating and hormonal imbalance. Constant stress is also a behavioral attribute, and sometimes, it is a learnt behavior. Some people are born 'worriers' and others just have get overwhelmed with too many stimuli and don't know how to cope. Someone I worked with 'loved' the comfort zone of being under constant stress. Whatever it is, its a real problem-so acknowledge it so you take the next step of managing it.

Why do we gain weight when we are stressed?

When we are stressed, our body produces more cortisol to cope with stress. Increased cortisol does a few things in our body. One is that it increases craving of carbohydrates (gives us a sweet tooth too) which is associated with insulin resistance and hence weight gain. This is one of the many ways in which cortisole affects our weight gain. 

What can we do?

I would love to say 'don't stress'! But stress is as much a part of our lives as is the air we breathe and the food we eat. So let's learn to 'manage' it better, rather than waiting for an impossibly ideal situation of no stress at all

1. Don't skip meals-have balanced meals, with foods that work for your body
2. Cut down on processed foods, refined carbs
3. Improve the quality of your carbohydrates
4. Cut down on sugar
5. Cut down on caffeine
6. Check with your doctor about Magnesium and fish oil supplements
7. Go back to the basics-ask your doctor if ashwagandha is for you
8. Get out and exercise. Find a workout regime that you like-that resonates with you. The likelihood that you will stick to it is very high.
9. Find an activity/hobby you like and commit to it - even if it is one hour a week.
10. Learn to say 'no'
11. Learn to delegate
12. Learn to draw boundaries
13. Get social-meet people and friends in person. It will lighten you up and give you that much needed conversation!
14. Try essential oils-I love lavender
15. Find a confidante/therapist/a coach to help you cruise through your stressful phase

You are the boss

You own your body. Accept your challenges, accept your circumstances. See what you can make better. Make a list. Take baby steps-one change at a time. Be appreciative of what you have achieved.

Love yourself up-be kind to yourself. Don't own stress, let it slip by-little by little.


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