The Someday Isle of Women’s Health Care
I thought that if I was:
1. Patient with others
2. Kind, understanding and compassionate
3. Sacrificed so my children can have a better life than I did
4. Put my husband’s needs ahead of my own; even have sex when I really need sleep
5. Make sure that I participate at church, school, social and community organizations
6. Volunteer for good causes
7. Made sure to be effective, efficient and productive at work
8. Stay organized at home and work
9. Stay up-to-date on technology, the news, and world events to be informed
10. Become financially successful
Then I would be satisfied, content and happy. Why am I not? I’m too tired.
May is Women’s Health Care Month. A 21st century woman’s daily new norm is overload, overwhelm, multitasking and staying “on.” Women are paying a high price to “be all, do all and have it all.” For most, they are wondering if there is going to be anything left of them after they finish their to-do lists. This ever-increasing stress keeps the body in a state of ramped-ness. It is no wonder that heart disease is the #1 killer of women in the United States. Most know the ramped-ness as stress. But do you really know what stress is and what it does to you?
Stress puts the body in a state of constriction which I call the survival ego self. When you are in the survival ego self you become so disconnected from your body that you don’t even feel the tension in your muscles until it has escalated into a painful cramp or spasm or you yell or scream or make a nasty negative comment to your loved ones. While stress is necessary for life, it can spiral out of control becoming detrimental to health. Stress helps you when it causes your body to fight an infection or heal a broken bone. It can make you push yourself to work overtime to complete an important project. Once it is completed, a little bit of rest and you bounce back no worse for wear.
But when you stay in an ongoing stressful state like working overtime, caring for aging or ill parents, or taking care of your own children with no down time for you, the stress begins to whittle away at your health: emotionally, physically, and spiritually.
Stress research shows that over 1,400 known physical and chemical responses take place in the body. Stress activates more than 30 different hormones and neurotransmitters!  When this happens, your thinking becomes confused and distorted, your short term memory is suppressed and you become more reactive to things you wouldn’t normally react to. This distorted perceptual stress soup is a mix of facts, confusion, and if we have unexpressed unprocessed trauma, it gets triggered as well.
Now everything is wrong and you pull out your list going back to the beginning of time looking for someone to blame for your present problem. Or, you just start beating up on yourself rehashing old negative self-talk tapes that lead you to Nowheresville. Your decisions from this reactive place don’t consider consequences; you just react.