How to Fight Stress to Keep Your Hair Healthy
Some people wear their stress as a badge of honor, making sure to let those around them aware of how much they’re struggling, day in and day out. They don’t really know why but for some reason, this gives them a sense of validation. They don’t realize that the stress they hold on to so tightly is truly hurting them and sucking the potential for true joy out of their lives.
Luckily there’s a lot you can do to turn stress into joy. We’ve created a stress-fighting checklist to help you fight the negative grip that stress has on you. This will help you to avoid the effects of premature aging and stress-related hair loss.
Different Types of Stress
Before we dive into our list of stress-fighting strategies, we want you to understand the different types of stress.
Short-term stress, which is healthy and beneficial, can be characterized by pressing snooze one too many times and having to rush to get to work on time. Once you get to work on time, your stress levels decrease and you feel calm again. The rush of adrenaline actually helped you get out the door in time for work.
On the contrary, long-term stress can be characterized by going to work every day and dealing with feelings of degradation, isolation, bullying, or extreme discomfort without having the means to change the situation.
This kind of stress is harmful to your health because it increases the amount of cortisol in your body. Cortisol is a precursor to an abundance of mental, emotional, and physical health problems.
Long-term stress can wreak havoc on your body. It causes premature aging which includes the development of fine lines and wrinkles as well as hair thinning and hair loss. It can lead to mental ailments such as depression and anxiety. There is also a direct link between long-term stress and your heart, your blood pressure and in fact, all of your bodily systems.
1. Financial Security
The first order of business in your stress-fighting action plan is to create a sense of financial security in your life. Financial security can be characterized by having an adequate income that will enable you to provide shelter, food and clean water for yourself and your family.
It sounds simple but for many, having a “liveable” income is extremely hard to attain. Do your best to secure your finances to help you live comfortably. That means two things, a) find or create a means of attaining a liveable income, and b) budget like your life depends on it!
The art of budgeting in a society that encourages debt isn’t an easy task, but you can do it. Feeling in control of your finances is the single most important predictor of your stress level.
2. Time Management and Prioritization
These days, we’re often juggling the demands of full-time jobs with the responsibilities of full-time parents. We need to make sure to pay the bills on time, put food in the fridge, ensure the house is clean, the laundry is done and remember to call Sally back! Without good time management and prioritization skills, a busy life could be a huge stressor, but it doesn’t have to be.
Busy lives CAN be strategically planned out in advance with wiggle room for inevitable disruptions. The best way to do this is with a calendar. Filling time slots with priorities is a necessity. As listed below, you need to include exercise, meditation, and relaxation as priorities as well.
3. Give Your Body the Nutrients it Needs
Your body needs fuel to function. If you’re consistently feeding it unhealthy foods, you can expect to feel sluggish and unmotivated. Eating healthy can optimize your energy levels and leave you feeling more motivated and in control of your life. This will help to keep the levels of stress at bay.
4. Include Exercise in Your Schedule
There is nothing quite like a rigorous work-out after a long day to help you release pent up frustrations. Moderate to high-intensity exercise will also “sweat out” toxins from your body. Keeping up with an exercise regime will help you continuously blow off steam, keep your body healthy, and keep stress away.
5. Regularly Practice Meditation and Visualization
Meditation may sound a little far fetched to some, but try to bear with us here. There are hundreds of scientific studies linking meditation to many health benefits. It calms your mind and encourages healthy breathing practices which serve to activate your calming hormones, also lowering your stress hormones.
Similarly, visualization can be used to imagine your life as you want it to be. For example, if you have an issue with thinning hair, you would visualize yourself with healthy hair and this healthy perspective could actually encourage healthy hair growth and increase your self-esteem. Visualization, like meditation, can allow you to transform your thoughts from negative to positive, which will help with the maintenance of stress.
6. Make Relaxation and Enjoyment a Priority
It’s really important to carve out time for relaxation and enjoyment. All work and no play drove Homer Simpson crazy and it will do the same to you. Everyone relaxes differently. Some people have quiet hobbies like reading or gardening. Other people prefer to spend quality time with family and socializing with friends. Whatever brings you relaxation and joy, schedule it into your time slots.
7. Have Clear Goals
Having clear goals will help you stay focused when those unplanned disruptions throw your schedule off. Make financial goals like saving for a new home, a new business venture or your children’s RESP. Stay balanced by creating family goals, relationship goals, and personal goals. You should also make healthy goals, like losing weight if you are interested in feeling healthier and looking younger. If you’re dealing with physical issues like premature aging or hair loss, consider looking into procedures that could help bring your youth back.
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