We are all familiar with the causes of stress; in short – 21st century living! Cortisol is a stress hormone. When we are experiencing stress, or we have an infection, cortisol raises our blood pressure and blood sugar levels. These changes help us to survive short periods of stress, but become harmful when they continue. Persistently elevated levels of cortisol can kill brain cells and negatively affect brain function. Stress can also contribute to a host of other pathological conditions within the body.
Effectively managing stress
In order to effectively manage stress, it is important to focus on stress reduction activities that work for you. These could include yoga, meditation, mindfulness, massage, breathing techniques, gardening, reading, listening to music, or keeping a happiness and gratitude journal. When we learn to effectively manage our stress, we see an improvement in our sleep, energy, patience, resilience, focus and memory.