In today’s world, our stress tends to come in small doses that are repeated throughout the day.
Imagine the typical working woman’s life. She gets up five minutes late and immediately, she’s under stress because she could be late for work.
She rushes around to get her family ready, then realizes she forgot to make the treats her son needed for his class.
She frantically searches the cupboards and finds some packaged snacks she can send.
Finally, everyone is out the door and she’s on her way to work. On the road, she gets into a traffic jam. More stress, but she can’t do anything about it.
That’s the problem. There is nothing to fight and nowhere to run. She just has to sit in traffic and do her best to calm down. Meanwhile, her body has released hormones in response to the stress.
Her muscles are tight, her pupils dilated, and her heart is beating faster, but there is no release. She simply has to sit and stew.
Eventually, she gets to work and finally, her stress levels start to go down. But then she gets an email from her boss asking for a last-minute meeting on a project she hasn’t had time to review.
Up go the stress hormones again, and she frantically tries to put something together before the meeting. She makes it through somehow and collapses back at her desk for lunch.
And so it goes.
We experience these little stresses one after another and the hormones build up inside us, but then they have nowhere to go, so they remain in our bloodstream, which isn’t healthy.
Also, as we said earlier, it isn’t healthy for our adrenal glands to produce cortisol day after day after day.