goat2What Gets Your Goat??

What stresses you out the most? The kids, traffic, work, money… everything? You’re not alone! We all experience stress to some degree. Have you felt more stressed over the past few months? Most of us have, with all the turmoil in the economy, the threat of global warming. In fact, research indicates that over the past several years, since the terrorist attacks of 2001, there has been a nation-wide increase in stress levels and related psychological disorders including Major Depressive Disorder, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, and increased rates of alcohol and drug abuse.

Remember that stress is our natural, automatic response to perceived danger. It can keep us alive! In our modern society however, our stress response is often continuous. Every day we see violent images on the news and are bombarded with stories of death and destruction. Many people walk around in a constant fear state, and are in general stressed-out much of the time!

Many illnesses have been linked to chronic stress including heart disease, high blood pressure, hypertension, high cholesterol, stroke, diabetes, skin irritations, weight gain, and migraine headaches. Stress can make your back, jaw and head ache, leave you with a lowered sex drive and disrupt your appetite and sleeping patterns. Our immune system suffers leaving us vulnerable to colds and flues, and slowing the healing process. Emotionally, stress can leave us feeling irritable, anxious, and depressed and leads to increased rates of homicide and suicide.

What symptoms of stress do you experience in your life? Take a few moments and write down your experience. And tune in next time when we start to explore ways you can immediately decrease stress in your life and in the lives of those you care about.

Chris Tickner is a Pasadena psychotherapist, child therapist, and clinical supervisor practicing holistic psychotherapy, where he combines mindfulness psychotherapy,  somatic therapy, neuroscience, and good old fasion humor and compassion to form a a powerful treatment that is transformative and holistic.  There are thousands of California psychotherapists, and finding a counselor or finding a therapist can be daunting. On his website, Chris provides a primer to help you find the therapist that is perfect for you! Chris is also a Pasadena therapist specializing in anxiety psychotherapy and depression psychotherapy.