Coherence. If you haven’t heard this word the context of stress before that’s okay, its really just a fancy way to say “mindful and connected.” When you feel stressed out, coherence a goal to strive for; its that place where your mind and your heart and your body are aligned and you feel it. You feel present, centered, aware and you move through any given moment with conscious purpose.
Physiologically, coherence can be recognized by a calm nervous system, low (or lowering) stress hormones and an even heart rhythm. Stress disrupts coherence and engenders the opposite — a hyperactive nervous system, stress hormone (cortisol) release, an uneven heart rhythm — and the effects of stress on the mind and body can be widespread including:
5 Practical Tips for Stress Management You Can Implement Today
How to best manage stress in your life depends on your individual needs, but here are 5 relatively universal tips that can help reduce stress and the effects of stress on your life.
Acupuncture for Stress Management - Proven Stress Relief
In Chinese Medicine stress has a specific energetic pattern that primarily affects the Liver meridian. Over time and with increased severity, stress can affect the Qi of Heart and Spleen as well and at each level, different symptoms present themselves. With 3,000 years of clinical data behind it, Chinese Medicine - with Acupuncture as a primary treatment modality - has proven techniques for moving Qi and reducing stress in the body.
In an exciting twist of events, western research is actually catching on to this fact! A study published in the Journal of Endocrinology gained press in 2013 explored the biological mechanisms involved in acupuncture’s stress-relieving abilities. They discovered that acupuncture actually reduces stress hormones in the blood stream meaning that acupuncture can actually reduce stress on a molecular level!
The research showed that acupuncture can work on both the short term and long term, chronic stress cascade in the body lending credibility to the use of acupuncture for both acute and long term stress reduction.
A Parting Note on How to Make Stress Your Friend
I hope you find the tips above useful and, if you are looking down the barrel of a new high stress time or struggling to manage stress in your life in general, please consider getting some acupuncture treatment. It works! And now there is research to prove it. Neat, huh?
I leave you with my favorite TED talk on making stress your friend - the central message here is that stress does serve a purpose in your body, and being stressed about stress is actually worse than dealing with stress itself. Does that make stress management unimportant? Certainly not, prolonged stress is not great for you, but dealing with the stress itself is enough without getting stressed about the stress!
Until next time,
Rebecca M H Kitzerow is a Licensed Acupuncturist practicing in La Center, Washington. With over a decade of experience she has won 10 Nattie consumer choice awards from Natural Awakenings Magazine since 2014.