stress's sunny side
Posted by Andrea Nakayama
Did you know that there’s actually a sunny side to stress?
That’s the good news.
And it’s the news I’ve been savoring all month long as I dove into the new year with new intentions, a heightened work load, travel, family colds & flus and my preparation for the upcoming Revitalize Winter Cleanse, which focuses primarily on the adrenal glands and the stress response.
Stress has been defined as: The body’s nonspecific response to a demand placed on it. This nonspecific response can be psychological, physiological, emotional, or all of the above.
On the sunny side, stress is a big motivator. It gets you moving toward your goals ~ whether they be to squeeze a workout into your daily routine, prepare for the new adventure of a cleanse, confront a difficult situation with a friend or partner, or take on something lofty, like social justice or changing the face of healthcare. All of that takes just the right amount of stress.
Stress, in the proper proportions, actually boosts strength and brain function.
You can think of stress like a fine sea salt. The right amount enhances everything it touches, but too much ruins the whole thing. Another example is imagining two trees, one raised in a protected biosphere and the other firmly planted on the outskirts of the windiest city on earth.
The tree in the biosphere is shielded and protected. It’ll grow a trunk that’s not very strong or sturdy. The tree in the wild, however, with its exposure to wind and the elements, will become solid and reliable enough to swing on. Yet too much wind, as in the form of hurricane, can still take our hearty windy-city tree down.
With all that in mind, there’s one critical component that allows us to sop up that sunny side of stress, that allows the tree to grow more substantial and unyielding. Without it, the good can quickly become the bad.
That key factor is another one of my favorite RE words. (If you haven’t noticed, the TrulyFood Seasonal Cleanses are all named for one RE or another.) And this RE word is one that deserves our attention, every day and especially this time of year. Can you guess what it is? . . . .
While we can become stronger and brighter because of our exposure to stress, we can only do so if we have enough recovery to balance it.
That tree? It needs to withstand the winds and then take its form of a deep breadth, relaxing, revitalizing and renewing before the next winds come storming through. Or imagine a sprinter. With the finish line in site, she gives her pursuit everything she’s got and then takes time to repair, regain and restore balance.
So here are my questions for you? . . .
Where do you build recovery into your everyday?
How do you learn to detoxify from the stress of living life?
What are the practices you embrace to build the resources that make you resilient?
These are some of the things that I ponder and practice as I prepare to help you understand the nuances of the stress response while fueling yourself with the good food that feeds you.
In fact, consider this, the foods you choose can support either a heightened stress or a heightened recovery response right within your very own ecosystem.
Which do you choose?
I invite you to come Revitalize with me and learn about making some of the choices that best serve your recovery, resilience and renewal.
EXPERIENCE A FREE TRAINING SERIES WITH ANDREA NAKAYAMA TO HELP YOU
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