Do the Littlest Things Stress you Out?
Your partner tells you that you overreact. You’re irritable and short-tempered. You know that spilling milk shouldn’t be a big deal but you can’t help but get upset every time.
I want to tell you that you’re not crazy and this isn’t your fault.
Your stress response is on high alert. Your brain and body are so used to being stressed that you have developed negative plasticity to stress. This means that it takes less stress to cause the same stress response than it did before.
This happened to me when my mom died 15 years ago. I remember that everything felt so stressful and that I couldn’t handle the smallest things.
This is normal after a traumatic event. But it’s not normal for this to be your status quo. It’s not normal for this to continue for years.
When I first started working with my client RC, she told me that her life shouldn’t be stressful-she had a loving husband, a healthy baby, a worry-free job she loves, etc. But she felt stressed all the time. When I saw her cortisol levels on the hormone test I ran, it all made sense. Her cortisol was extremely depleted. Her body didn’t have the resources it needed to make cortisol and handle stress. Her other tests she had a few bacterial pathogens and lots of other bacterial overgrowth. Her minerals were out of balance and she had quite a few food sensitivities.
I recommend avoiding the foods she’s sensitive to which include gluten and dairy. She chose to stop taking birth control because she saw how depleted her estrogen and progesterone were. I recommended supplements to support her stress response, rebalance her minerals, and deal with the pathogens. We worked on her thoughts about sleep and her life in general. To sum it up, I looked at everything that was causing stress and helped her minimize it so her body could heal.
Now she’s “been sleeping really great!”
If you’ve gotten to this point, it means that you’ve been too stressed for a long time. This can be from emotional stress. But it can also be from physiological stress that you don’t even know is there-a pathogen in your gut, eating a poor diet, hormone imbalance, nutrient deficiencies, etc.
All of this stress causes your body to constantly release cortisol. Over time, cortisol gets dysregulated. Your sympathetic nervous system takes over, which is your fight or flight response. When you’re in fight or flight, it blocks your parasympathetic nervous system, the part of your nervous system that makes you feel calm and relaxed.
Signs of unhealthy stress response
always something to do
never time for yourself
not getting enough sleep or rest
not enough time or motivation for regular exercise
not accomplishing your life’s purpose
Being in fight or flight all the time also causes inflammation throughout your body and brain. Then you’re more susceptible to pathogens, hormone imbalances, and digestive issues.
Constant high cortisol damages your brain, especially the hippocampus. Your hippocampus is where learning and memory occur. And it’s what regulates your circadian rhythm. This is how stress directly leads to poor memory and sleep issues.
The hippocampus is also the first part of your brain that gets affected by Alzhemier’s! To prevent this scary disease and to sleep normally, you’ve got to find out everything that’s stressing you out in your body and your mind and change it.
This is exactly what I do to help my clients improve their health so they can sleep normally. I use functional lab testing to find out what's going on in their body that is out of whack and stressful. I also use life coaching skills and cognitive behavioral therapy techniques to help with mental stress. Other sleep programs or doctors only look at the body OR the mind-no one else looks at both. This is why my program is so effective.
P.S. If you’re struggling to sleep and you’re stressed out by the small things, I’m here for you. Book a call with me to talk about what’s going on with your sleep and how I can help you sleep well and stop sweating the small stuff!