Reflexology can help reduce the effects of stress by inducing a state of deep relaxation, releasing blocked emotions, and discussion to identify the stressors in your life and how to remove or minimise these.
Positive vs negative stress
Positive stress is good. It provides us with a buzz to face challenges, whether this be performing in front of an audience, facing a job interview, or surviving threatening situations. As long as the effects of the adrenalin rush that allowed us to meet the challenge are dissipated, the body will use its innate mechanisms to come back into balance without long-lasting adverse effects.
Negative stress is continuous or frequently recurring without the opportunity for the body to return to a balanced state. Sadly, it has become a part of everyday living.
Stressors can be physical, chemical or psychological or they may be a combination of these. The need to live in over-crowded cities, too much exercise or lack of it, travelling long distances, everyday activities that involve exertion, repetitiveness or awkward positioning, and accidents all create physical stress for the body. Too much food is another physical stressor placing strain on the digestive system and surrounding organs. Disturbances from electronic equipment as well as noise pollution add to the physical stressors to which we are now subjected. Our bodies are exposed to chemical stress because of environmental pollution from contaminants that affect the air we breathe and the food we eat, eating the wrong foods and consumption of drugs such as alcohol, nicotine and allopathic medicines.
Current lifestyles cause us to continually subject ourselves to psychological stress – pressure of work, the seeming need to acquire possessions, competitiveness, discrimination, as well as crimes committed against us. These are in addition to coping with family and other relationship problems, not to mention negative thought patterns of which we just don’t seem to be able to let go so that we can move on.
Today, psychological stress is considered to be one of the biggest causes of illness. Typical examples include:
- Cardiovascular problems
- Respiratory disorders
- Muscular aches and pains
- Unsafe cholesterol levels
- Upset of the female hormone cycle
- Headaches and Migraines
- Chronic fatigue
- Lack of concentration
- Memory loss
- Weakened immune system
- Allergies and Skin disorders
- Digestive disorders
- Panic attacks
Unfortunately, psychological stress can cause us to further abuse our bodies by adding physical and chemical stressors in the form of comfort food, stimulants, excessive physical exercise or too little sleep.