Stress relief for Men, who don't ask for help.
This article is for those hardworking men over the age of 40 who tend to not complain.
These men can and do suffer from stress and usually suffer in silence because they think that is what they have to do. They do not often ask for help. They plod along until they break. They perceive the warning signs of illness as weakness. It is well known that a great many men in this age group rarely go for help unless pushed to it by their partners.
Usually, this is accompanied by grumbling. These stressed-out individuals need all the help they can get so how do we go about it?
Before we look at how we help perhaps we should have a look at why we should help.
The consequences of long-term stress are many. Long-term stress is implicated in heart disease, high blood pressure, obesity, drug and alcohol use, stomach and digestive problems as well as depression and anxiety. Sometimes it can be a warning shot across the bows, sometimes it will sink them.
Chronic stress can shorten a life span but it can be fixed.
So how do we get through to these wonderful hard-working men?
• They need to see the benefits of changing habits.
• It needs to be both cost-effective and time efficient.
• It needs to be simple and easily understood for compliance.
• We need to show them that it is possible to make changes that will improve their lives.
Let us put this into practice.
Men who work hard may need supplements to support them.
Vitamins like a good B complex and Magnesium will assist with stress management, relaxing the nervous system and replacing salts that are used up during the day.
A nice cup of chamomile tea at night will aid digestion and sleep and reduce stress.
Reducing junk food intake will help and yes, I have seen the tradies with their buckets of chicken. Changing the diet to remove processed carbohydrates and sugars and adding in whole foods will reduce stress on the body and digestion.
A sugar craving can mean that the person is eating emotionally or is lacking in magnesium. Sugar can increase mood temporarily but not give anything nutritionally.
The other thing that can help stress is meditation. Now the men in this group may think that meditation is a wishy-washy thing limited to hippies.
Noted Sydney cardiologist Dr Ross Walker is a huge fan.
So if need be, change the name to the Relaxation Response, a name coined by another scientist Dr Bruce Lipton. Meditation allows the body to return to its normal resting state.
Prolonged stress can cause heart and circulatory problems because the blood vessels are under too much pressure when stressed.
Gut issues are a problem because not enough blood supply goes to the gut for digestion when a person is stressed. Urinary tract disorders also occur for the same reason as gut issues.
Emotional distress and mood swings can also occur.
While a person is stressed they cannot heal.
Meditation or the Relaxation Response will allow the body to heal.
Explaining the relaxation response may be difficult but here is a simple method that they can try.
Lie down somewhere comfortable where you can keep your spine straight.
Concentrate on your breath, breathe in and out.
Now concentrate on slowing your breath, count to 4 as you breathe in and 4 as you breathe out. Do this for about 10 minutes twice a day.
Try to increase the count if you can.
By concentrating on breathing and slowing it down you are slowing your heart rate.
This technique can help when feeling anxious or stressed.
If this does not work for you other methods are depending on what works for you.
You can try listening to the world for 10 minutes. Just listen to whatever you can hear and be in the moment.
Going for a walk in a park or on the beach is another great way of relaxing.
What doesn’t work is copious amounts of alcohol, drugs, junk food, and sugar.
All of these mask what is going on and do not provide long-term answers.
In fact, they can add to the stress rather than help.
If you cannot manage stress then your doctor will be taking care of your heart, your lungs and your gut.
Getting sick will slow you down so, take 10 minutes twice a day to invoke the relaxation response, watch your diet and take your supplements and enjoy life more.