What causes stress and how to effectively fight it
Updated: Feb 10, 2020
Needless to say, the whole lot of our chronic health concerns are caused by stress. What's worth noting is that before resorting to pills or alternative treatments, such as acupuncture or auriculotherapy, which can be effective indeed, how many of us have tried to find an answer one quite important question - what are the causes of stress?
Western medicine excels in treatment of acute and severe health conditions. Alas, it often falls short when it comes to sourcing viable solutions for chronic health concerns. There’s little ability within the framework of Western medicine to treat the root causes of some chronic health issues such as diabetes, migraines, fibromyalgia, depression, PMS, asthma, allergies and food sensitivities. Pharmaceuticals are used to address the symptoms rather than the underlying causes of illness or imbalance, which often creates immediate relief to the sacrifice of long-term healing.
Partly, the ineffectiveness in treating the persisting health disorders lies in failure to recognise such psychological/ emotional factors as stress. Stress is being seen as rather secondary and not really important enough to concern ourselves with too much.
That said, many alternative health practitioners who do see stress as an important issue, don’t treat chronic health concerns at a root level either. Some practitioners can help us feel more relaxed and at peace, but this experience tends to be short-lived and patients can find themselves dependent on the modality in order to feel good as a result. Simply, because the root causes of stress remain unaddressed.
In short, in order to get rid of stress as an underlying issue of multiple health concerns, our focus has to return to the question of what is actually causing us to feel continual and chronic stress.
Following my clinical and personal experience, I have come to believe that stress is a direct result of some of the beliefs and emotional/ mental programming we would have learned in our early years. Throughout life, we are all taught specific beliefs about who we are, what life is, and how we should function in this world. Unfortunately, many of these beliefs turn out to be limiting and even harmful. As we become attached to these beliefs, we can lose our connection with who we really are and the unlimited potential we possess.
There are many examples of beliefs that don't serve us at all. The most common ones are:
You have to fight your way to the top.
Life isn’t safe; you have to put yourself first at all times.
Money is evil.
The key to success is to get a secure and safe job.
I’m not good enough and I never will be, no matter how hard I try.
The key to happiness is finding someone who will love me.
My job defines me.
I can't change, this is the way I am.
I'll be happy when…
And there are many more!
The extent to which these limiting beliefs linger in our minds, will determine what choices we make, how we respond to situations, how we feel about certain things, and how we create behaviour patterns. Some of the believes learned as the 'only truth' at an early age, can be the reason why later in life someone finds themselves in a seemingly 'successful' career or relationship but still not be happy.
The 'mind over matter' approach I believe in, sees the physical body as an expression of emotional or psychological conflict, especially when it comes to persisting and recurring health issues. In other words, if the body is ailing due to stress, and our stress is caused by holding onto the false beliefs about who we are, then the key to lasting health is to tackle these beliefs and, subsequently, create the ones that will serve us better.
Sadly, many of us only experience a ‘wake up call’ when the persisting health condition such as migraines, disc degeneration, IBS, or chronic fatigue develop and leave us with no choice but look for solutions. In these cases, it helps to see the pain or discomfort experienced as a body's expression of the necessity to look inside, to learn to read messages from our subconscious mind and to take this opportunity to create life on our own terms by letting go of what we’ve been taught was true.
The ultimate cure in this approach is to learn the way the body and mind communicate, to read the physical clues our body is giving us, to examine the beliefs that hold us back and to see if we can link these beliefs to the lifestyle choices we’ve made in terms of career, relationships, dietary choices, and so on.
A skilled health practitioner can be of great assistance in this process.
If you's like to learn more, please have a look at my website.