Stress has a huge impact on practically every aspect of our health and has been discussed in significant detail throughout this book. Due to it’s far reaching effects and strong influence on immune stability, stress has a direct impact on many aspects of skin health and the relative state of chronic various skin conditions (including seborrheic dermatitis).
Regulating the amount of stress we experience and how we deal with it may hold tremendous value in reversing not only our skin issues, but also many other health issues we may be facing. The biggest issue is that modern life makes it rather difficult to avoid stress altogether.
Minimize Stress Due to False Sense of Reality
Most of us have at-least some level of constant exposure to media (movies, advertisements, music, etc.). Most of this media, portrays life as a story that always has a happy ending. The actors all have perfect skin and the story is always filled with fascinating events throughout.
Reality is much different. Real life is often filled with boring and tedious moments that leave you day dreaming of a perfect life. This creates a gap between how we believe our lives should look and how they actually do. Essentially, everyday life may begin to seem boring, dull and horrible in comparison.
The effect of social media
Social media is one of the main communication tools of the 21st century. Unfortunately, the images, videos and glimpses we see of other peoples lives have all been curated to almost utter perfection. We rarely see the sadness, misfortunes and gloominess that no one wants to share. And this can further add to our false sense of reality.
If you find yourself constantly depressed about life, just remember that what you see in the world around you doesn’t always fully portray the whole picture. Life is what you make it of and everyone’s life is filled with unique ups and downs. Learning to enjoy the journey will make the ride that much better.
Find Ways to Cope with Stress
There are life events which are unique to each and every one of us (divorce, loss of loved ones, disability, medical diagnosis, etc.). These events can happen unexpectedly, cause a significant amount of stress and are practically impossible to avoid. This makes finding ways to properly cope with stress an essential part of healthy living.
Covering such a topic in the context of this book is rather difficult due to it’s sheer complexity. One thing that we can do is attempt to summarize some of the key points that are typically discussed in most self-help books which deal with stress. These points are:
- Learn to say no (be assertive)
- Eat a well-balanced diet (helps if you actually enjoy the food you eat)
- Avoid information overload
- Obtain adequate physical activity
- Lower your expectations
- Learn to live in the moment
- Help others
Helping others helps you
Helping others has a wide variety of physical and psychological benefits . It’s easy to do and can really help you life a fulfilled life.
Whatever strategy is chosen, the worst thing one can do is give into stressful situations and continue to focus on the negative aspects of it. Instead of this, we must try out best to find ways to use the energy which stressful situations creates and direct that energy in beneficial and purposeful ways.
Think of stress as something that makes you stronger, not weaker. This simple approach will provide a sense of empowerment and over time you will learn to feed off of stress instead of being defeated by it.
For example, if you believe that the circumstances you live in are unfair and that you’ve somehow been cheated, you unintentionally create the conditions (blame others, isolate yourself, etc.) which may lead to further unhappiness and stress. This negative thought process fuels itself and pushes you further into depression.
On the other hand, if we take life as it comes and simply accept our reality as something that we are blessed to even experience, we may find ways to feel happy even in the darkest of times. And if your really commit to this approach to stress, it may allow you to prevent stress from surfacing in the first place.
Chronic stress is a little different
The discussion above only holds true for acute stress. If you experience chronic stress, you should look for ways to resolve the root cause of the stress.
In the end, you should really think of this as just a starting point. If you feel that stress is a major issue for you and you require support, further reading on this subject may prove beneficial. Just keep in mind that over-stressing stress may also simply fuel the fire. Sometimes coming up with your strategies and mental models holds the most benefit.
This section introduced some of the most common sources of stress in the modern world and discussed various approaches to dealing with it. Key actions items include:
- Understand the impact media can have on your self of reality
- Accept life as it comes and enjoy the journey
- Develop strategies for coping with unexpected stress
- Eat a well balanced diet and learn to enjoy the food you eat
- Ensure you obtain adequate levels of physical activity
- Find ways to help others
- Shift your view of stress and let it empower you
- Don’t over think things