“If you do not take time for your WELLNESS you will be forced to take time for your ILLNESS”!

In this fast-paced world, where speed has become the new norm, comes heightened levels of stress. While certain amounts of stress are beneficial, excessive levels can create a spiraling multitude of detrimental effects. At one’s very core, our bodies do not know the difference between good and bad stress. All it knows is the fight or flight response! It’s when our bodies operate on an emotional level, where good stress like getting married, or bad stress like the death of a loved one, is experienced.

We add to our own collapse by trying to keep up with the fast paced levels of life. The same technologies that have promised to make life easier have created an acquired need to have the latest gizmo that assures us increased time savings and productivity. We have an insatiable need to have the latest model of every piece of technology even before it’s produced. This learned habit of getting more done in less time is a major stress all by itself. Enormous amounts of stress and strain lead to a breakdown of our bodies and worse, our minds! Throw in life’s curve balls such as unexpected illnesses, accidents, diseases, and trauma and you have a recipe for disaster! We’re not built for the unrelenting side effects of excessive stress!

One of the most common symptoms which occurs because of this anomaly is PAIN! How society has learned to deal with pain is as unique as the pain itself. Sometimes it is ignored, other times it is suppressed with various substances such as : opiates, alcohol, medical marijuana, food, or anti-depressants. Other typical solutions have been injections, balms, electrical modalities, gambling, retail therapy, even exercise, especially when done at unreasonable levels. Most of these approaches treat only the symptoms of the problem as opposed to dealing directly with the root cause. Addressing the causes is an important step to total body healing and wellness. Simply stated, optimal healing comes from within. Once an understanding develops in regards to the cause of a problem, then optimal coping techniques and amelioration can be established.

Here is a simple example that may help illustrate our approach. Which word sounds more appealing, “Stressed” or “Desserts”? Desserts is just stressed spelled backwards. All it takes is one different viewpoint to change the whole meaning or experience of one word. That’s the same with stress. While we cannot always control what happens to us, we can control how we react in terms of our perceptions and reactions. When things happen in our daily lives, all we can do is do our best at any given moment, at any given time.

Author-Lori Parsons, Wellness and Exercise Science Expert at Great Barrington Integrative Wellness