meditationMeditation is one of the best methods of stress reduction. Meditation is not only effective but most of all it has no harmful side-effects unlike using medication.

Life is filled with stress, which can be short-term or long-term. Short-term stress is a reaction to an immediate threat like danger is commonly known as the 'fight or flight' response. Once the threat has passed, our bodies and minds return to normal.

Short-term stress is part of life and as long as it doesn't exceed healthy levels our bodies and minds can deal with it quite well. However in recent years more and more people have became affected by very harmful long-term or chronic stress.

NEARLY 9 out of 10 Australians are feeling stressed
and most blame work for the way they feel, a new poll shows. Finances, health and personal relationships were also stress factors, a Newspoll commissioned by Lifeline Australia revealed. (...)
Four out of 10 people said they experienced "unhealthy" stress levels.
Nearly three-quarters of those who said they were stressed said work was the major contributor. Money stressed out two-thirds and one in five were "highly stressed" about it.
Women were more likely to be stressed than men, the poll found. So too, were people who lived in big cities compared to their country counterparts, except when it came to relationships.
Single people were more likely to be stressed than couples and the more people earned the more stressed they felt. (Article from The Australian, July 13, 2009)

Chronic stress may be caused by the following:

  • on-going work pressure
  • overload and burnout
  • financial worries
  • relationship problems
  • health problems
  • loneliness


The symptoms of stress can appear on the three different levels.

Physical Symptoms of Stress

  • headaches
  • elevated blood
  • pounding heart
  • trembling
  • sweaty palms
  • nausea
  • fatigue
  • shallow breathing
  • susceptibility to minor illness
  • tightness of the muscles

Emotional Symptoms of Stress

  • depression
  • restlessness
  • irritability
  • angry outbursts
  • self-deprecation
  • insomnia
  • nightmares

Mental Symptoms of Stress

  • reduced creativity
  • forgetfulness
  • lack of concentration
  • diminished productivity
  • lack of attention to detail
  • diminished sense of meaning in life

* * *

Research has shown that stress affects many areas of our health.

"In our stressed-out world, the fight-or-flight response that kept our ancestors alive has turn into a 'stew and chew'. If no physical response occurs after stress revs the body up for battle, chronically elevated levels of stress hormones stimulates appetite and encourage fat cells deep inside the abdomen to store 'toxic weight'." - Pamela Peeke, Ph.D. National Institute of Health, (Los Angeles Times).



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