The epidemic of modern life is stress
We came across an article by Deepak Chopra recently that made a lot of sense. It’s almost identical to what we’ve been saying for years:
“If an epidemic is defined as a disease that affects whole populations, without having a medical cure, then the epidemic of modern life is stress”.
We also read an article by a journalist craving to ‘escape life for a while’ and she’d found a weekend free in her busy diary in which to do so. Turns out it was the only weekend she had free in over two months!
We can jump on our soapbox at this point, because what Deepak was talking about is a very serious situation and, in the main, created by ourselves.
Not giving ourselves proper timeout, leads to stress, which in turn leads to a breakdown of the body’s internal balance. If the stress isn’t relieved, damage occurs. Serious damage within us!
Many people we see as clients are suffering from things like insomnia. They might say that they’re not stressed, they just can’t sleep. That’s because their brains have gradually become used to an increase in external pressure of whatever sort it might be.
The progression of stress
Ongoing stress reveals itself in various stages:
- Minor things like feeling mentally tired or perhaps under pressure from work.
- Then follows a behaviour change, such as a change of behaviour within work or relationships. Sometimes we see people turning to alcohol in order to escape pressure or stress. But as stress mounts the drinking can get heavier, the need for distraction more severe.
- Eventually chronic stress leads to physical damage. Stomach aches, bad digestion and headaches are likely. So is reduced immune response, leading to more colds, worsened allergies and we don’t even want to mention COVID! After that, the problems will tend to be associated with inflammation, such as skin eruptions, irritable bowel syndrome, even a heart attack or stroke. By this stage, the damage caused by stress has led to serious system breakdown.
What’s interesting is when someone presents at the clinic with any of the above, they feel that this is happening to just them. When we explain this is simply how the brain works, given certain circumstances, you can see the relief is huge. They usually reply with something like: “What, it’s not just me then”? It’s at this point we laugh and reply “Oh no, it’s most definitely not just you”.
Learning how the brain works
When we teach our students how the brain works, we see pennies dropping like it’s going out of fashion. Light bulb moments relating not only to themselves, but friends, family and work colleagues too. As a course graduates, we always get great feedback and within that feedback can always be heard: “This course is life-changing”.
Interestingly, it’s not just life-changing for the student, but all their case study volunteers over the 10-months of training and then all the future clients they will see over the coming years.