Many of us living with addiction have managed to bury our deepest emotions for so long that we aren’t aware of how much stress we’re actually living with on a daily basis. We prioritize everything over our mental health – our responsibilities and obligations, our daily schedules, our relationships and the people we take care of. When we experience toxic levels of stress on a regular basis, our overall health can slowly decline. Our mental, emotional and physical health can all suffer. Our addictions become our default coping mechanism. When we’re working towards recovery, it’s so important to learn how to be conscious of our stress levels so that we can manage them and find healthy ways to cope.
There are some signs that can help us to pinpoint when our stress has reached toxic levels. We can experience excessive anxiety, worry and panic that distract us from being able to focus and interfere with our ability to cope with daily life. When stress accumulates to dangerous levels, we can feel increasingly depressed and despondent. We feel unable to keep up with the demands of our responsibilities. We feel easily overwhelmed and triggered.
When we’re experiencing acute stress, we might have more severe mood swings than we’re normally used to. We might find that our emotions fluctuate dramatically. We might be more reactive with other people and take things personally more often. We might feel like people are out to get us, or like we’re being victimized. We might feel powerless to stand up for ourselves, and we may feel uncomfortable in our environment.
Heightened stress can affect our thought patterns. We can feel our minds race and feel as though our thoughts are out of our control. We might obsess more about the things that are bothering us. We might have a harder time controlling our emotions and feel like we can’t calm ourselves down whenever we’re upset.
Healing our stress levels requires investigating the underlying issues causing our stress. We have to look beyond the daily stressors and surface problems to examine the deeper factors increasing our stress levels. Sometimes our stress can be attributed to unhealed trauma, unresolved conflict or unhealed internal issues. We might need to do some conflict resolution and deeper inner healing before we see a reduction in our stress. It’s so important that we learn to practice self-care and mindfulness to help ourselves heal from stress. Meditating, committing to a spiritual practice and having a regular exercise routine are all especially helpful in managing stress.
At Enlightened Solutions, our unique treatment programs offer clients long-lasting results by focusing on all aspects of a natural recovery process. We believe in healing holistically – mind, body and spirit. Call us today: (833) 801-LIVE.