Introducing Sean Flanagan from www.SeanFlanaganWellness.com!
Sean is inspired primarily from a very simple idea… that human beings are not fundamentally flawed. We are not such strange creatures that we need to kill ourselves for better health with neurotic, restrictive, and overly-aggressive fitness and nutrition strategies. We don’t have to deny every instinct and desire to reach some pristine state of bodily utopia. Our bodies work –we just usually need to do a better job of listening to them and responding accordingly.
Disgusted by the deception and dumbed-down nonsense found in mainstream nutrition, Sean has devoted, and continues to devote, a considerable amount of time in understanding the underlying science and principles of health.
Sean wrote a guest post for me today about 3 ways of dealing with Lifestyle Stress!
3 Ways of Dealing with Lifestyle Stress
Don’t freak out – but excessive stress can mess you up. Although far from the only negative consequence… stress, by definition, precedes stress eating – which generally results in extreme over-consumption of food.
While I tend to think this is an inherently good thing in some ways – it can indeed work at reducing the stress response, that’s why people do it – it obviously can make body composition management quite difficult. If you need to eat an extra thousand calories every day to get your head straight, that’s going to add up after a while.
Although nutritional strategies can be used to decrease the overall stress response – specifically salt and carbohydrates – I want to keep this focused purely on lifestyle stuff.
So there are 3 ways we can “manage” stress:
1) Stress Avoidance. You know something is going to drive you nuts, so you steer clear. Sometimes stress avoidance is not remotely realistic. If your primary stressor is caring for an ill loved one, you don’t have the luxury of saying “Nah, I don’t really wanna deal with that today.”
One of the common areas where we can use stress avoidance is in the power of saying “no”. We often think that we have to say “yes” to every request that comes our way, which can put is in uncomfortable and stressful situations. One of the most important things for LONG-TERM stress avoidance is creating the right lifestyle and career for you as an individual. Unfortunately, we view hating our jobs as being inevitable in our culture and we often become complacent with that idea.
2) Stress Release. This is the most commonly used strategy and it definitely has value. You do things that you enjoy and that help you decompress. Music, dance, art, exercise, sports, etc. are all examples of things that are often used to clear one’s head, break one’s normal routines, and relieve stress.
3) Increasing Stress Tolerance. Increasing stress tolerance basically means becoming less stressed out in the face of stress. In other words, you’re still encountering the same challenges – but your personal response to it is not as intense. The simplest and most important means of increasing stress tolerance? Sleeping enough. Activities that train you to enter more into your parasympathetic nervous system (“rest and digest”) should help too. That would be any kind of “mindfulness” practice such as meditation. And the complete opposite of that, fun and high stress activities like a combat sports (Boxing, Wrestling, MMA, etc) seem to help people better cope with stress.
Sean Flanagan is a Health Coach helping women worldwide tap into greater self-nourishment and break from the traps of harmful dieting practices for long term metabolic health and body composition management. He is also the creator of the Fit Body Blueprint program – a beginner’s guide to hormonally and metabolically sound exercise. You can connect with him over at Facebook and his website, www.SeanFlanaganWellness.com.