Is stress killing your spiritual life and damaging your relationships? Do you have moments when your stress level triggers frustration and bleeds over onto the people around you? Welcome to the human race!
Most people aren’t aware of how much uncontrolled stress damages their interactions. I find that when stress bleed-out happens, the Holy seems far away and my spiritual life feels flat.
In addition, stress causes problems physically, emotionally, and mentally. According to the Mayo Clinic, stress can produce high blood pressure, stomach problems, headaches and a poor immune system. The feelings of irritability, anger, depression and sadness can be symptoms of untreated stress—all of which can lead to conflicts with others.
Here are 5 tips to help you deal with the stress in your life:
1. Recognize that stress is a signal that you need more time with the Spirit Holy. Why do you think you can handle stress when just the experience of it screams otherwise? You can’t live this life in your own power, so you had better seek the One who has come to live inside you (see John 16:33 and Romans 8:11). Ouch!
2. Find friends to pray with you and help you process your stress. You were not designed to carry the cares of your life alone (see Galatians 6:2).
3. Set clear boundaries in your life. All of us feel overwhelmed when we fail to place limits in our areas of responsibility. It isn’t long before our negative emotions leak out on others causing damage we later regret.
4. Eat a balanced diet heavy in vegetables and fruits. Poor eating habits contribute to imbalances in hormones and brain chemistry. Skipping meals throws off your blood sugar levels and elevates your stress levels!
5. Take a half hour walk or participate in another form of exercise once a day. Exercise gives your stress a healthy release and causes you to relax.
Stress results from living in a fallen world with imperfect human beings—of which I am one. How have you found the stress in your life damaging to your spiritual life? How has it injured your relationships? What helps you cope with your stress? I’d love to hear your comments.
In Him together, Susan Gaddis
For other stress related posts on this blog, see How To Keep People From Draining the Peace Out of Your Day, Part 1 and How To Keep People From Draining the Peace Out of Your Day, Part 2. For more health information on stress see the Bupa Health Stress Fact Sheet and the Stress Management page of the Mayo Clinic.