Where, you might wonder, does all this extra energy and increased alertness come from? The answer is by diverting energy from the body’s normal repair and maintenance jobs such as digesting, cleansing and rejuvenating. So, every moment you spend in a state of stress, essential physical maintenance jobs are being neglected and the ageing process of your body therefore speeds up. It’s stressful even thinking about it. But the effects of prolonged stress are even more insidious than that. Like a car driven too fast, the body goes out of balance and parts start to wear out.
As a consequence your overall energy level drops, you lose concentration, get confused, suffer from bouts of ‘brain fog’, fall asleep after meals, get irritable, freak out, can’t sleep, can’t wake up, sweat too much, get headaches, tight muscles... sound familiar?
A quick remedy for energy deficiency
In an attempt to regain control, most people turn to stimulants. Legal stimulants include coffee (containing theobromine, theophylline, caffeine), tea (containing caffeine) and energy drinks such as cola (containing caffeine), chocolate (containing theophylline), as well as psychological ‘stimulants’ including demanding jobs, dangerous pastimes, horror movies, thrillers, emotional traumas – something to put you on the edge. Alcohol and cigarettes act as both stimulants and sedatives. Illegal stimulants include amphetamines and ‘uppers’, cocaine, crack and crime. Naturally it becomes increasingly difficult to relax with a regular intake of stimulants, so many people learn to balance their use with relaxants such as alcohol, sleeping pills, tranquillisers, cannabis and so on. After a while, it’s only the adrenalin and cortisol that keeps us going. If you quit the stimulants or take some time off, you collapse into a heap – depressed and exhausted. This means that you’ve become addicted to stress and/or stimulants.
Are you addicted to stimulants?
Imagine a day with NO coffee, tea, sugar, chocolate, cigarettes or alcohol. If you think ‘no way!’ there is a very real possibility that you have some level of addiction to stimulants. This can range from a mild addiction that you can live with quite happily to a major addiction that is running your life. However, whatever the level of addiction, the net consequence is less energy not more.
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