Being a busy working Mum can often feel overwhelming at times and we can find ourselves becoming increasingly stressed. Add Christmas stress into the mix, with all the increased events and preparations. We often find ourselves questioning what stress does to your body and how stress affects your behaviour and health.
Or is it just me?!
The definition of stress
Stress is how we react when we feel under pressure or threatened. Often, we feel stressed when we are feeling that life is unmanageable or out of control.
How stress affects the body
- Rapid breathing
- Pounding heart
- Missed periods
- Anxious, irritable and low
- Upset stomach
How stress effects symptoms of the menopause
Imbalanced hormones during peri-menopause can change the way we physically and emotionally respond to stress and can bring on feelings of anxiety, depression or make us feel overwhelmed. Some women who don't realise that these feelings are hormonal issues are sometimes prescribed anti-depressants or anxiety medication as a remedy.
Why do I get so stressed
Stress is normal, we all go through periods of stress in our life. No two people experience stress in the same way or react in the same way.
Stress can be caused by the day-to-day juggle that is a woman's life. Children, clubs, family, work, generally just trying to fit everything in! Don’t even get me started on the increased schedule at this time of year and the school non-uniform days were always a last minute dash back home for a onesie! What I needed at times was a PA for the children’s admin!
Some stress can be caused by life altering changes, often this sort of stress can be most challenging to tackle.
During the first lock down I experienced chronic stress for the first time in my life. It manifested its self in night time anxiety attacks. It was incredibly frightening to wake, mid slumber, to having a panic attack. I thought I was having a heart attack in my sleep.
It’s taken a long time for me to work out how to recognise what provokes a build up to this happening. For me, I wanted to explore all the natural ways I could help myself. This is also one of the resounding reasons for launching Mother Cuppa. I wanted to share with you the blends that help me. My RELAX blend is perfect for those suffering stress and sleep issues.
What are natural stress relievers
- Get outdoors
Exercise has been evidenced as being a great stress reliever, adding fresh air into the mix and you're onto a winner. My husband and I now hike most Sundays, we’ve found it incredible threptic as a family. Each week we plan a new route, pack up a picnic and off we go.
- Minimise phone and screen time
This is a big one for me personally. I run my life from my phone. At times of heightened stress I can actually find myself frantically scrolling and not taking anything in. For me, this is a sign to put the phone away for a while.
- Natural supplements
There is a wealth of overwhelming information on the net about natural supplement, how do you even know where to start. I will keep it really simple for you. You need adaptogens in your system, particularly women of our age. Ashwagandha is a powerful adaptogen plant, used for thousands of years to relive the bodies stress levels. Ashwagandha is known to interact with the hormone responsible for stress, cortisol, and several proteins responsible for maintaining stress within the body. You can find Ashwagandha in my Energise blend.
What is the best herbal tea for stress?
Of course, I will point you in the direction of Mother Cuppa Blends, I've blended them to support me in difficult times. Each blend has a selection of adaptogens to support your body.
5 herbs to help with stress
- Passion flower
Shown to boost the levels of the neurotransmitter gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) which works in the brain to promote relaxation.
It helps the body adapt to stress and has been shown to reduce stress, lower anxiety, fight fatigue, and boost mood.
- Lemon Balm
Lemon balm has been used for over 2,000 years as a natural stress reducer. It increases brain levels of GABA, a neurotransmitter known for producing a feel of calm. This provides a gentle soothing effect and makes managing stress easier.
Lavender works as an anxiolytic (an anxiety reliever) and as a sedative, to increase relaxation and calm, and help bring about sleep. Lavender interacts with the neurotransmitter GABA to help quiet the brain and nervous system activity, reducing agitation, anger, aggression, and restlessness
- Kava Kava
This little-known shrub is a powerhouse of relief for those who suffer anxiety. Causing dopamine levels in the body to rise. It’s so powerful there is a recommended limit on this particular herb.
To conclude, from experience I can say that stress can be debilitating, sometimes it can feel that it takes hold of you rather than the other way around. Being very aware of your triggers and getting in early can be a great help in managing stress levels. Plus reaching out to your loved ones and communities to talk it through can be super therapeutic. Leave a comment if you feel comfortable, I'd love to be there for you.