ME Monday 11-08-2021 Inside & Out

If we could see how we look on the inside when we look in the mirror, what might we see?

Since we can’t see what’s beneath our skin, how might we know that everything inside us is functioning accurately?

Unless we receive signals, telling us something could be wrong, how might we ensure that all is how we want it to be?

What if we hadn’t gotten any signs at all, then suddenly we get an indication that something doesn’t feel right?

We may wonder what this new occurrence is when it could be something that’s been going on for a while.

Daily, we experience the realities of life. Some of those facts may not make us happy. These things may cause us to sense tension or anxiety.

When we experience these feelings of pressure over extended periods, how we look on the inside may not match what we see on the outside even when there may not have been any warning signs.

So, what is important to know about stress and what can we do about it?

“Our body is hard-wired to react to stress in ways meant to protect us against threats from predators and other aggressors.”1

This reaction process is meant to last short-term, only until the imminent danger passes.

“When stressors are always present and we constantly feel under attack, that fight-or-flight reaction stays turned on.”1

We may feel like we face many demands each day, such as taking on a huge workload, paying the bills, and taking care of our family. Our bodies treat these so-called minor hassles as ongoing threats.1

When our stress response is continuously active, it can begin to interrupt how we’re functioning internally without immediately providing warning signals telling us something is wrong.

Stress is often the origin of many conditions; it can create the ideal environment inside our bodies for maladies to generate before symptoms make themselves known.

“Stress that’s left unchecked can contribute to many health problems, such as high blood pressure, heart disease, obesity, and diabetes.”3

According to Maslow’s hierarchy of needs air, food, water, and sleep are at the foundation of what we need physiologically. At the very top of the list, for our mental health is self-actualization which means “the complete realization of one’s potential, and the full development of one’s abilities and appreciation for life.”4  Along with self-actualization, we need strong self-efficacy, the beliefin our potential, which is crucial to enable us to maximize our self-responsibility and boost our ability to handle daily stress.

“High self-efficacy has been linked with numerous benefits to daily life, such as resilience to adversity and stress, healthy lifestyle habits, improved employees’ performance, and educational achievement.” 2

Though there aren’t any guaranteed ways to ensure we keep our insides looking as good as we want inside and out, there are simple things we can do to take maximum care of our body and mind.

Daily stress doesn’t have to be a routine. We can choose to use our inner power to regularly boost our resilience!

The answer is likely different for each of us and implementing our “ME” time regimen is a great way to take full advantage of the care we give our minds and body!

When we recognize the full development of our potential and believe in what we are capable of, we can get the most out of our responsibility to ourselves.