Conquer the Cortisol, The Stress Hormone

Arghhhh...h...h....smack!!! smack!!! smack!!! Get out of my way...leave me alone!!!
Arghhhh...h...h....smack!!! smack!!! smack!!! Get out of my way...leave me alone!!!

Do you know that the usual stress can actually trigger our body to release excessive amounts of cortisol? Yes, the “cravings” hormone that makes us tend to eat more food which is higher in carbohydrates.

You might keen to know what cortisol really is or well, you might curious enough to know how cortisol has “attacked” me back in the year 2005…yes, those days that my health was totally collapsed and I just couldn’t understand and accept how such a so-called “cortisol” could defeat me to such a poor state…

I was explained by my doctor then that cortisol is actually an important hormone in our body, it is secreted by adrenal glands and involved in different functions such as regulation of blood pressure and insulin release for blood sugar maintenance, proper glucose metabolism, immune function and inflammatory response…

Well, although stress isn’t the only “culprit”, yet cortisol has been termed as “the stress hormone” as it is also secreted in higher levels during the bodies’ fight or flight response to stress.

I was explained by him that small increases of cortisol can actually lower our sensitivity to pain; helps maintain homeostasis in our body and heightened our memory functions. Yet, for “some” reasons, my body’s functions has been proved to hardly return to normal due to the higher levels of cortisol in my bloodstream, and well, you know the rest…

Since then, I was leading my life with high blood pressure and higher levels of bad cholesterol. And what actually sadden me the most was that I just couldn’t find any of the ways out to shed off my body fat especially those that have been kept in my abdominal during those critical years.

I struggled that for years, and I have come to realize that if I were to gain back the healthy me, I have no choice but to keep my cortisol levels healthy and under control, so that my body’s relaxation response can then be activated after the fight or flight response occurs. That’s how my “healthy journey” began…I learned to relax my body with various stress management techniques, and started to make my lifestyle changes.

If you were in the midst of challenging yourself with the stressful lifestyle, care to let me share it with you how I “conquer” those stressful years of mine and lead a healthy lifestyle then.

Punch it, jab it till all your frustration, anger and fears out...
Punch it, jab it till all your frustration, anger and fears out...

Sweat Out Tension With A Good Workout

Well, if you have been here with me right from the start, you would know that I do encourage and promote exercise the most.

And like always, before exercise, I love to emphasis the importance of nutrition. It works everything wonder only when you have the right nutrition in your body.

So, once you have the awareness of the nutrition, move it and move on then.

Take this in mind that the more you move, the healthier and merrier you’ll be. No times for exercise? Well, don’t worry about this, moderate activities like gardening and walking can already make you a difference.

If you really can’t be persuaded, think about these then and imagine how exercises can actually transform you to a healthy and energetic you. Well, your cells would actually tingle with joy when you find you too can create a dream body, you would be glad enough to find that exercise actually makes you smarter and improves your memory and mental clarity which in the mean time, increases your productivity at work.

Relax...breath...focus...and let go...
Relax...breath...focus...and let go...

Yoga

Ever wonder how yoga can help you reduce your stress? As you might think this is another form of exercise, well, it is more to spiritual angle most of the time. People tend to find it more relax and have a sound sleep after doing the true yoga. You really need to believe that it always reduces our anxiety and muscle tension after having those grace movements and poses that going with a soothing music. In fact, I was so blessed to have a pretty, graceful and experienced instructor at that time to guide me through all the way , despite of the poses, what I probably couldn't forget she had taught me is to lead a life with "no compare, no compete…"

Close your eyes...relax your mind...let go of your sadness, fears and worries...
Close your eyes...relax your mind...let go of your sadness, fears and worries...

Meditation

Do you believe that a simple technique practiced for as few as 10 minutes per day can really help you control your stress pretty much and decrease your anxiety so as to achieve a greater capacity for relaxation?

I was taught by a friend of mine when I was enjoying my sauna in the gym. She taught me to either repeat a word, sound or a phrase while sitting with eyes closed for 10 to 20 minutes, relax my body and breathe through my nose in a free and natural way. Although it was quite tough for me to get into it those days, I could then achieve the desired state of relaxation over the time.

So, if you were the next to calm yourself, try this...begin it with a sitting pose, relax your body, clear your mind and close your eyes…choose a word you like, anything such as “hmmm…” ,“ar…”, “er…” or like what my friend taught me “om…”.

Focus on the repetition, ignore that sadness, worries and fears or whatever nonsense that has vexed you in your daily life, practicing it in 10-20 minutes, once you are done, remember please to remain yourself seated and slowly open your eyes when you are ready, then only allow your thoughts to return to reality…

Choose the music that you really feel comfortable and relax...
Choose the music that you really feel comfortable and relax...

Listening To Music

The power of soothing music is just so amazing that you could never imagine. You would be happy enough to know that by listening to music, it helps not only slowing our pulse and heart rate, lowering our blood pressure but decreasing our levels of stress hormones as well.

Listening to slow music especially those slow than the natural heartbeat (72 beats per minute) can have a tremendously relaxing effect on our minds and bodies. Opt for those Mother Nature such as the gurgling sounds of water, ocean waves, crisp sound of birds and insects or the calm of a deep forest that promote calmness and release your tension…and along with the music plays, let the music takes you, allow it to wash over you, rinsing off your stress, anxiety and fear from the day.

So, find some music that really makes you feel good. It is really an incredible way to tune out your anxiety. Focus on your breathing as you enjoying your chosen pleasant music and try to clear your mind of all negative thoughts and feelings.

No idea of the music? Well, try this, Silk Road Theme by Kitaro, I love this much.

Take this in mind though, different people has different tastes of music, if you need a stimulation for your day, you can go for some faster music with the high energy hip-hop mix and rock your body. Trust me, it really worth a try.

An outlet to help you let go of negative thoughts.
An outlet to help you let go of negative thoughts.

Journaling

Hey, how this helps? Well, when those dark days of mine, I really got myself busy with the journaling.

Surprised?

To me, writing down our thoughts and feelings, what we are frustrated about, worried and fears helps to clarify and focus what we are experiencing and how we are feeling. It helps releasing the emotions involved, allowing our experience to become fully integrated in our mind and thus counteracts many of the negative effects of stress.

Well, though it might not seem to release tension from our body like exercises do, yet, it’s a great practice of overall stress reduction and emotional healing, it allows us to really discover who we are.

Wish you all the best...
Wish you all the best...

To A Healthy And Blissful You...Blessed With Love…

The above mentioned are surprisingly the ways I used to heal my heart and soul before. I do know the fact though that each person has their unique response to stress, so just make the above mentioned as a reference and experiment each of them so as to learn what works best for you and help you back into balance.

To a healthy you and blissful you...blessed with love...

Do you use any of the above to conquer your stressful life?

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© 2011 Injured lamb

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Comments 30 comments

philipuae profile image

philipuae 4 years ago from Sharjah, United Arab Emirates

I worked in an extremely stressful environment. I got difficult situations everyday to find solutions, time was an important factor. Taking yoga, listening to music or other activities to get you de-stress. It is also important to learn how you can handle the stressful situations. How you can absorb the stress, depends on the situation and individual techniques may change.


Cyndi10 profile image

Cyndi10 4 years ago from Georgia

Good information here. Thanks for sharing.


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois

This is a great hub with useful tips. I am into fitness also. I do the treadmill, meditation, and i love music. I love to dance too. Thank you for sharing...


Injured lamb profile image

Injured lamb 4 years ago Author

Thanks for your sincere comment Philip, hope to be visited again...


Injured lamb profile image

Injured lamb 4 years ago Author

Thanks Cynd10, hope you enjoy the reading...have a nice day...


Injured lamb profile image

Injured lamb 4 years ago Author

Hi always exploring, glad to see you again...thanks for leaving me your sincere comment here, so..give me five, dancing always rock!


Derdriu 4 years ago

Injured Lamb, What a compelling, informative, persuasive summary on the healing connections of being to doing, expressing, feeling and thinking! You do a really great job of explaining the mind-heart-body link.

Thank you for sharing, etc.,

Derdriu


dayzeebee profile image

dayzeebee 4 years ago from Cebu, Philippines

Blessed sharing. Thanks and voted up and beautiful. Blessings:)


kashmir56 profile image

kashmir56 4 years ago from Massachusetts

Very good information within this well written hub, will help anyone to relieve their stress. Could help many over the Christmas Season.

Vote up !!!

Have a awesome Christmas !


Injured lamb profile image

Injured lamb 4 years ago Author

Appreciate your sweet comment Derdriu, you really made my day...hope you enjoy it and do come back often...cheers!


Injured lamb profile image

Injured lamb 4 years ago Author

Thanks for your voting and comment dayzeebee, really appreciate your time here for me...bless you too..


Injured lamb profile image

Injured lamb 4 years ago Author

Hi kashmir56, thanks for the reading and leaving me your nice word here...appreciate much...Merry Christmas...


Senoritaa profile image

Senoritaa 4 years ago

Great hub. Your methods of relieving stress sound good, and I practice some of them myself so I can vouch for their worth. Another one I would like to add is eating healthy. Balanced and timely diet is not only good for your body but also for your mind. Cutting down on alcohol, cigarettes, caffeine, and other such addictions also help reduce stress.


Injured lamb profile image

Injured lamb 4 years ago Author

Thanks for stopping by and leaving me your sincere and precious comment Senoritaa, hope you enjoy the reading...cheers!


cclitgirl profile image

cclitgirl 4 years ago from Western NC

Wow...journaling, meditating, working out...yep, all ways I love to take out some stress. Great hub. And now...I'm going to go do some yoga. :)


Injured lamb profile image

Injured lamb 4 years ago Author

Hi thanks a lot for being here cclitgirl, enjoy your yoga, enjoy your day, cheers!


Nancy Owens profile image

Nancy Owens 4 years ago from USA

This is very useful information about cortisol. Voted up and useful. Voted up and Useful! Thank you for taking the time to write this Hub.


KoffeeKlatch Gals profile image

KoffeeKlatch Gals 4 years ago from Sunny Florida

All of your suggestions are excellent. I have used them all at one time or another. Up and useful.


Injured lamb profile image

Injured lamb 4 years ago Author

You are most welcome Nancy, appreciate much for the comment and voting...hope you enjoy the reading, have a nice day!


Injured lamb profile image

Injured lamb 4 years ago Author

Thanks for being here with your support KoffeeKlatch Gals, you made my day...cheers!


Brett.Tesol profile image

Brett.Tesol 4 years ago from Somewhere in Asia

Voted up and useful, as all that you mention are great for getting rid of stress ... which we all have a little too much of nowadays.


Injured lamb profile image

Injured lamb 4 years ago Author

Hi Brett, really thanks for your voting, it's kind of encouragement to have your comment here...appreciate much...


Nell Rose profile image

Nell Rose 4 years ago from England

Hi, I always exercise when I am stressed, and all of your ideas are great, I would love to take up yoga, one of the best stress busters of all, cheers nell


Injured lamb profile image

Injured lamb 4 years ago Author

Yes, thanks Nell, yoga always rocks! Thanks for being here to give me your support...appreciate much...have a nice day!


SidKemp profile image

SidKemp 4 years ago from Boca Raton, Florida (near Miami and Palm Beach)

Excellent hub - and I speak from experience. I use all these techniques, and I've recovered from cortisol imbalance and adrenal burnout. It's a long road - it took me 5 years. Votes up and useful


Injured lamb profile image

Injured lamb 4 years ago Author

Thanks for the reading SidKemp, appreciate much for your voting and comment...glad to know that you have recovered from it, 5 years is really a long road but I must say you are just that great and brave SidKemp, please take good care of yourself always...be blessed...


KenWu profile image

KenWu 4 years ago from Malaysia

Great info, now I know what is cortisol and what it can do to harm us. We all live in stressful environment, but yet the mind belong to us and well, knowing this at least we know that we are in control.


Injured lamb profile image

Injured lamb 4 years ago Author

Hi Ken, glad to have you here again...hope this hub helps...thanks for being here and leaving me your precious comment...be blessed...


Lebronson profile image

Lebronson 2 years ago from Utah

Very cool article. I love the various techniques for stress relief and coping. Healthy, fun and helpful. Thanks for the post.


Injured lamb profile image

Injured lamb 2 years ago Author

Thanks a lot Bronson...thanks for stopping by and leaving your precious comment...hope you enjoy and be blessed always...

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