Let's Talk Stress!
“ If I only didn't have stress, I'd be fine. “ Actually, without stress, you'd be dead. We seem to have an incomplete understanding of the word and how it applies to our life and health. Certainly, many people are looking for ways to better cope with stress and how to minimize the amount of stress in their lives. Like the term health, the term stress is a vague notion yet its importance is paramount. Wow, aren't you glad you're reading this book to get a handle on how to live better, longer?
The term “stress” was introduced to the physiological realm by Hans Selye in his 1956 book “The Stress of Life”. It is an engineering term having to do with applying force or energy to a material. In chiropractic, physical, chemical, and mental/emotional stresses are referred to as “external invasive forces.”
Essentially, stress is energy and information. It’s always present. It can’t be totally avoided. We can, however, improve our ability to handle it.
What does stress do?
The effect of stress on a material depends on the type of material and the type of stress. There are endless variables to keep scientists and engineers occupied indefinitely. However, there are just two basic outcomes of the interactions of stress and matter. The matter becomes less organized or more organized. It becomes less complex, it disintegrates, or it adapts constructively to the stress and becomes more organized. An example of the latter would be digestion and assimilation of food resulting in growth and fuel for the body. Non Living things are subject to the law of entropy. While they seem to resist stress and are often designed to do so, they always lose some integrity of their form and over time will eventually disintegrate. Living things tend to increase their level of organization when presented with stress. They don't simply resist stress, they thrive on it. Anything your brain perceives and causes the body to change is considered to be a stress.
How can stress cause two drastically different outcomes? Are some stresses benevolent, others malicious?
How is it that living things are able to deal with stress constructively? Is it that our bodies are the epitome of complexity and intelligent design? Well, consider this; if I cut my finger it heals, and if I cut the finger of a dead guy, it doesn’t. Same parts, different outcomes. We can rule out complexity of build. What other quality, perhaps sensed but not measurable, could be responsible for increased rather than decreased integrity? Well, chiropractic has a term for that, too. Innate intelligence, a subset of universal intelligence; that gives matter its properties and actions, causes every living thing to be able to adapt to stress. Innate intelligence delivered to the innate matter of your body by innate forces for the purpose of transmuting forces that would be destructive to a non living thing, into forces that cause the signs of life. Some people know it as life force. The term intelligent life force is more descriptive than simply life force. The reason becomes important later on but for now let’s just say that innate intelligence within the body is an unlimited intelligence. Our educated intelligence however is limited. We will see later that using educated intelligence as the primary tool to address body malfunctions has severe drawbacks and consequences. We adapt automatically to stress because we are alive! It’s not the parts, it’s the power!
We are not always able to handle all the stress on our plate. When we are overloaded, something has to give. The body will actually store the unprocessed stress to deal with it later. If it can. If it can’t get to it soon enough, we become subluxated. Like a blown fuse preventing electrical flow over wires, subluxation causes nerve energy to be altered so as to corrupt the information being communicated between the brain and the body. Things begin to break down because they have been devitalized.
Why does stress affect people differently?
Why do a group of people exposed to similar stresses have differ responses as individuals? One woman’s cycle may come with headaches, another with cramps, stomach aches, or panic attacks. Why? The answer is that prior unadapted stresses may have caused different levels of the spine to be subluxated. Think of the spinal levels as buttons on an elevator. Each brings you to a different part of the building. T5 Subluxation? Digestive problems. T12 subluxation? Kidney trouble, maybe blood pressure concerns. But why aren’t the symptoms always present?
Handling stress requires energy. Subluxations limit the amount of energy available to do the work of the body. In times of low stress, there seems to be enough energy to produce functions normal enough that there are no symptoms. Once the energy demands increase, the weak links in the chain, the subluxated vertebrae and their associated organs, begin to reveal their dysfunctions.
This is a major cause of illness. Malnourishment, and bad thinking habits are also contributors to underperformance of healthy functions.
How do I get myself to deal better with stress? How do I resolve this subluxation situation? One word answer. Chiropractic!