Stress Is the Life Force
To be alive is to have stress. The challenges that stress presents provide the stimulus we all need to live. Without the motivation of stress we would not think and we certainly would not act. The rhythm of life flows from the essence that is stress.
Your reaction to stress is the way you respond to an event, or stressor. Typically people view stressors as threats to their peace and well-being, resulting in a reaction. Stressors generally cause people to worry, feel overloaded, respond with anger, or become depressed. The result is that they feel they must protect themselves from any real or perceived event, particularly if the event is out of their control. Does this sound familiar to you?
Every activity you do involves stress because stress is part of living. Your positive response to stress allows you to survive with gusto, taking in all that life has to offer. Your daily routine consists of activities you have adapted to—your body, mind, and emotions generally know what to expect and they become comfortable with the routine. So the stress of your day-to-day life flows fairly well, but suddenly—zap—something happens to change your routine, and that disruption becomes a stressor.
Any change, even a pleasant one, can cause stress. Changing jobs or going on vacation is a stress. However, a change that you control affects you in a different way from a change you don't control. If you lose your job or cannot afford a vacation, you will experience that stress much differently from the stress you feel looking forward to a new job or a fun getaway.
Too much stress, even of your own choosing, can cause havoc. If you thrive on chaos and constant upheaval, eventually your lifestyle will catch up with you. Assuming too much responsibility, creating undue pressure, thriving on overstimulation will cause an eventual imbalance. One of the biggest challenges facing people today is how to achieve a state of balance when dealing with stress.
Recharge Your Body
The flight from danger or the need to fight for food does not exist on such a primal level today. However, a stressful meeting or an emotional confrontation still creates a highly charged physical response in us. Our body's reaction is normal, because, unfortunately, evolution has not caught up with our need to adapt our fight-or-flight response to present-day realities. Therefore, we often stay at a highly charged level, with our bodies running on high, because physically fleeing or fighting doesn't often solve our problems today. After a fight-or-flight response to stress, our bodies need physical exercise to burn off excess energy, and then our bodies need rest to replenish our energy. Massage is one of the tools to help the body release stress, recharge the body, and renew the feeling of well-being.