How Does Stress Affect Your Skin?
There is stress about gaining weight, aging skin, not being good enough, stress about the endless to do lists that flutter in our heads feeling like we will never get it all done.
There is even good stress, those warning signals from our miraculous bodies telling us, screaming at us to PAY ATTENTION.
Sometimes we don’t listen and instead head to the fridge for a nice slice of cake.
Holy stress. No wonder desserts tastes so good.
Stress is an insidious little creature that plays havoc with our health, with our endocrine system, our bowels, the activation of cells that make for a breeding ground for cancer. Stress causes skin problems too, like rashes, breakouts, premature aging and the list goes on.
We are in a constant state of fight flight or in some cases complete shut down, a third response, freeze. And most of the time we don’t even realize that we are fluctuating between all of these automatic self protection responses.
Fight. Flight. Freeze.
And we live in a free country, mostly. Our stress seems insignificant when compared to other parts of the globe and then this causes stress because I feel guilty and embarrassed that I would even dare to proclaim that I have stress.
Just writing these words makes my heart palpitate.
And heart palpitations are a recipe for so much of our health crisis.
Psychological AND physical problems.
None of this can be solved by my little post, but I do believe as all twelve step programs direct, that the first step is awareness. And awareness is what we need to combat stress.
We have to realize that our incessant need to head to the freezer for a big bowl of ice cream, or the bakery for homemade loaf of bread when just yesterday we swore off both is often directed by the master conductor in our lives- Stress.
Then there is the wine. Oh the wine. That beautiful bottle of Spanish Rioja just whispering, one glass, just one glass, that will settle those nerves.
But we also know all too well that these are temporary bandaids, hiding the cut, maybe stopping the bleeding for a spell, but at some point that bandaid has to come off so the air can work its magic.
And air is what we need. We need to breathe. We need to really breathe.
This is one of the most effective and free solutions to deal with stress.
A good deep breath.
Not a breath from your chest, but a breath from the deepest part of your belly where it feels like you are drawing it up from the ground through your toes, up your legs, into your torso, chest, neck, head and out into the universe.
What? Who breathes like this on a regular occurrence? Not as many people who could, this is for sure.
But breathing deeply, once you really understand it and feel it in your cells, is a stress reducer like nothing else.
And it’s free! And it has so many benefits, that I am sure you can google till your heart’s content, but I don’t need the science to back up what I know. Because breathing deep has been one of my go to solutions for stress for over twenty years.
It works. Not to eliminate stress. Because stress can be a gift too. That is the dessert part. Not the literal dessert as previously mentioned, but the delicious gifts of the wake up call that often stems from stress. Whether it be a major physical result like cancer or any other health crisis or just a blemish that showed up when the previous day, your skin was blemish free. Your body is a unique messaging system where the signs are so often ignored until they turn into tsunamis.
Lately, my partner and I have lately been discussing paying closer attention to the things we can control compared to the things we can’t. Focusing on the things we can control are all we can. Unnecessary drama caused by reading a social media post that elevates your blood pressure is a good example. Put the phone down more frequently, remove the social media app from your phone, this is something that is controllable and it is a small change that has a huge payoff.
Throwing away a magnifying mirror is another simple action if you find yourself obsessed about a new wrinkle or a sprouting hair that wasn’t there the day before. I like to remind people that no one sees your skin in a 5 diopter magnifying mirror on a daily basis.
Stress and Your Skin
Stress wreaks havoc on your skin and the way you respond when you are stressed can cause more problems. You may notice:
- Lack of clarity
Related: Steps To An At Home Facial
The outside parts of us are often the reflection of the inside parts of us. If a walk or a deep breath isn’t calling your name, sometimes a shower or a bath with some good aromas can really center your soul. I love the Jurlique body care line with these yummy scrubbers I use to wake my skin up.
If you find your self headed for that glass of wine or the big bowl of ice cream, pay attention to your skin the next few days. It is amazing when you start paying attention to the outcomes of your decisions how much information this provides the next time you decide to head for the bag of chips rather than a walk or a sit with some deep breaths.
For a complete at-home facial designed to combat stress and restore your skin, check out the Bio-Renew EGF Cell Repairing Facial by glo.