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How to NOT Stress Out...
How to “Flex It Out” Instead…
Daily -- Quick and Simple!

Healthy Replacement to Stress for Your Weight Loss, Peace of Mind and More from Actor Vince Vaughn’s Mom (who’s also a Trainer to Pro-Athletes)


Stress is not a four-letter word, but it really should be. The majority of Americans struggle with this overbearing emotion on a daily basis, some to the extent that it interferes with their physical health.

wound up

Ever felt so tightly wound that it’s only a matter of time before you explode? Keep reading to find out what simple form of stress relief the staff at SixWise cannot live without!

In 2009, for instance, data from the Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index found that the percentage of Americans experiencing a lot of stress or worry, and not a lot of happiness or enjoyment increased to nearly 12 percent, up from 11 percent in 2008.

Further, a new poll by the American Psychological Association (APA) also revealed that stress is getting in the way of many Americans’ efforts to live a healthier lifestyle. Only one in five adults polled said they were successful at making healthier lifestyle changes such as losing weight, eating healthy, starting a regular exercise program and reducing stress -- and 20 percent said their difficulty in doing so was related to experiencing too much stress (33 percent also mentioned willpower as a significant hurdle).

It’s a catch-22 because the more stress you’re under, the more difficult you may find it to engage in the habits that will ultimately make you feel better. You may also be tempted to reach for unhealthy forms of stress relief, such as alcohol, junk food or the TV remote control. The result is a vicious circle of stress causing unhealthy habits, which leads to even more stressed out feelings.

Why Stress Relief is So Important

Stress and anxiety interfere with your immune system, making you vulnerable to illnesses like the flu. They also impair your body's ability to respond to its anti-inflammatory signals, putting you at an increased risk of allergies, autoimmune diseases and heart disease.

Chronic stress is known to actually intensify inflammation, according to the APA, which makes you more vulnerable to inflammatory and neurodegenerative diseases like multiple sclerosis. Stress can also trigger diabetes, accelerate aging, and lead to weight gain.

So to put it mildly, feeling stressed can take a major toll on your health and your emotional state, especially if you stay stressed over a long period of time.

A revealing example was recently uncovered by researchers from Denmark, who showed that women in stressful or demanding jobs, such as nurses, were anywhere from 25-35 percent more likely to develop heart disease than those in manageable jobs.

The effects of stress are capable of interfering with just about every normal function of your body, and are incredibly subjective. Just as different situations may evoke varying stress levels in different people, the effects of stress on you may be very different from the impact it has on your spouse, your mother or your neighbor.

To get an idea of just how varied the effects of stress can be, browse through these 50 common signs and symptoms of stress, compiled by The American Institute of Stress:

Frequent headaches, jaw clenching or pain Insomnia, nightmares, disturbing dreams
Gritting, grinding teeth Difficulty concentrating, racing thoughts
Stuttering or stammering Trouble learning new information
Tremors, trembling of lips, hands Forgetfulness, disorganization, confusion
Neck ache, back pain, muscle spasms Difficulty in making decisions.
Light headedness, faintness, dizziness Feeling overloaded or overwhelmed.
Ringing, buzzing or "popping sounds Frequent crying spells or suicidal thoughts
Frequent blushing, sweating Feelings of loneliness or worthlessness
Cold or sweaty hands, feet Little interest in appearance, punctuality
Dry mouth, problems swallowing Nervous habits, fidgeting, feet tapping
Frequent colds, infections, herpes sores Increased frustration, irritability, edginess
Rashes, itching, hives, "goose bumps" Overreaction to petty annoyances
Unexplained or frequent "allergy" attacks Increased number of minor accidents
Heartburn, stomach pain, nausea Obsessive or compulsive behavior
Excess belching, flatulence Reduced work efficiency or productivity
Constipation, diarrhea Lies or excuses to cover up poor work
Difficulty breathing, sighing Rapid or mumbled speech
Sudden attacks of panic Excessive defensiveness or suspiciousness
Chest pain, palpitations Problems in communication, sharing
Frequent urination Social withdrawal and isolation
Poor sexual desire or performance Constant tiredness, weakness, fatigue
Excess anxiety, worry, guilt, nervousness Frequent use of over-the-counter drugs
Increased anger, frustration, hostility Weight gain or loss without diet
Depression, frequent or wild mood swings Increased smoking, alcohol or drug use
Increased or decreased appetite Excessive gambling or impulse buying

Chronic Stress Interferes With Proper Cell Function

When you become stressed, a glucocorticoid hormone known as cortisol increases. This is a necessary and beneficial change that allows you to be on alert and function quickly to respond to the stressful situation. Over time, however, this process can lead to chronically elevated levels of glucocoritocids, which can have detrimental effects on your health.

As a study published in the February 2, 2009 issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences stated:

“The study results show that, at first, glucocorticoids like cortisol or corticosterone boost mitochondrial functions to provide cells with more energy for coping with and adapting to acute challenges. This process appears to be critical in allowing a person to act quickly in an emergency.

However, chronic stress may lead to chronically elevated levels of glucocorticoids, which in turn may reduce cell functioning, via the interaction between GR/Bcl-2 and mitochondria. The decrease in proper cell function may be at the root of certain physical and mental illnesses.”

Proper Stress Relief is a Necessity, Not a Luxury

Sometimes all it takes to decompress is spending a few minutes outdoors in nature.

Stress has been called America's number one health problem, and it is estimated by the American Institute for Stress that 75 percent to 90 percent of visits to the doctor are for stress-related problems.

With statistics like these, having a reliable and effective form of stress relief is an essential part of your well-being.

There are many strategies you can take; ideally, pick those that appeal most to you and try to incorporate a variety of stress relief methods.

For instance, fortifying your body with the nutrients it needs is one key to reducing stress (and staying healthy while you're feeling it), as stress can actually rob your body of nutrients. This means eating plenty of fruits, vegetables and other antioxidant-rich foods while avoiding junk foods.

Likewise, simply hearing their mother’s voice over the phone is enough to help reduce stress levels in young girls, while getting enough sleep helps to lower the stress hormone cortisol in people of all ages.

Exercise is also an excellent stress reduction tool. Aside from strengthening your heart and lungs, two organs that can become physically affected from too much stress, it's great for your mental health too. Exercising increases the levels of endorphins in your body, which stimulate your immune system, reduce stress and put you in a better mood.

One of the best exercise programs out there, which combines not only the physical aspect of fitness but also the mental, is SheaNetics from -- developed by Shea Vaughn -- fitness guru and mom to Hollywood celebrity Vince Vaughn.

Shea maintains that “to continue to grow and thrive and to achieve well-being is really a journey for both the body and the mind.”

I openly share with you that my life has not been without challenge. But it was through tough times I found ‘you can’t eliminate stress, but you can give it a break,’” Shea says. “Scientific research has shown that exposure to the right kind of physical and mental influences produces a state of meditation, which in turn reduces stress. Reduce stress and well-being emerges.”

That is what makes the program available from truly effective where others often fail. “Exercise alone is good for you but an equally fit mind completes your sense of self-fulfillment.”

SheaNetics is based on the following Five Living Principles, which Shea says “are an inspirational force in helping me create a positive lifestyle with a healthy body and the supportive mental and emotional paradigm to deal with changing and demanding times. One encourages the other and together they help you find balance, self-confidence and a personal state of well-being.”

Each principle is designed to bring a unique benefit and level of meaning into your life, and you can read more about them here:

  1. Commitment
  2. Perseverance
  3. Self-Control
  4. Integrity
  5. Love

As Shea points out:

“Most exercise programs are geared only to give you short-term physical improvement. But SheaNetics® understands the real goal for us all is to find total health and fulfillment that is life-lasting. This can only be achieved by creating harmony in body, mind and self.

SheaNetics® gives you the practical tools and everyday desire to make beneficial changes that are complete and permanent.”

Personally, the staff at SixWise has fallen in love with SheaNetics both for its ability to strengthen our bodies AND calm our minds. In a world full of chaos and stress, SheaNetics can help you to find the tranquil balance you’re missing.

Finally, if you’d like even more ideas for adding peace and relaxation to your hectic life, be sure to read It's Time to Relax: 15 Quick Tips to Help You Shift Your Gears to Relax Mode Quickly. This past article is filled with simple steps you can take to unwind on a daily basis, to protect your physical health and your mental sanity -- and give you back your sense of inner peace.

Recommended Stress Level Questionnaire / Quotient:

What Is the Stress Level of Your Household?

SixWise Ways!
SixWise Says ...

Six Purely Impractical De-STRESS Facts and Factors for LOL (or not) …

I was becoming increasingly worried that there wasn’t enough anxiety in my life… (for which I learned the basic truth that most stress is simply self-imposed).

Stress is when you wake up screaming and you realize you haven't fallen asleep yet.

“If not for STRESS,” many people say, “they would have no energy at all.”

All stressed out and no one to choke? Sorry, I can’t relate as I don't suffer from stress … I'm just a carrier.

Ways to Transfer Your Stress to Others #10: Make up a language and ask people for directions.

You know you're stressed out when you can hear mimes yelling at you.

Recommended Reading

Good Stress vs. Bad Stress? How to Lose Weight & Be Well With Good Stress Lev

Some Startling Stress and Anxiety Statistics and What You Can Do to Eliminate Your High-Stress


Occupational and Environmental Medicine 2010;67:291-292 January 1, 2010

APA Practice Central March 31, 2010 May 13, 2010

The American Institute of Stress

National Institute of Mental Health February 3, 2009

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