My Way or the Highway… There’s Stress and Conflict Either Way!

By: Michael Lam, MD, MPH

It doesn't matter which way - stress and conflict are everywhereSome sources of life’s stress and conflict are actually caused by how you respond to situations, whether it was in the way you were raised or how you have reacted to different situations over time. Either way stress and conflict is a part of life. However, too much stress will eventually take a toll on your body and can cause further problems later in your life. It’s important to learn stress and conflict management to keep these from becoming bigger problems.

When we are younger we tend to ask for toys and things to be done the way that we want them to be done and for the most part our requests are met by parents, caregivers, and family members. Because getting your way seemed to happen a lot in your toddler and preteen ages you begin to think this is the way that life is. Most teenagers and young adults are very head strong and would like to see themselves get their way all of the time, but this is just not the way that life works.

Our teenage and young adult years tend to be filled with drama and a lot of “bad” breakups due to a specific mindset that each of us has; most of the time the drama is caused by one person who is just not flexible or willing to let go of the issues or situation. This can cause a lot of stress in your life whether you are the person that is not flexible or you are the person willing to compromise.

To try and make your life less stressful you should really try and see things from another person’s point of view. All people have different and specific mindsets that allow them to create opinions on events that take place and the way that things should and should not be done. As you age and get a little more mature you will realize that to have less stress you will need to learn to let go of certain mindsets and learn to compromise with others.

If there were no compromising and only people doing what they thought was correct, there would never be any teamwork or any projects that required more than one person. As we age and become more flexible we learn that life could be so much easier if we could learn to let go and allow ourselves to work in a group with compromise. This will allow us to get more work accomplished in a lot less time.

Although people age and become more flexible there will still be different events and different people that still have a specific mindset that you are never going to change. These people are considered to be head strong or stubborn. If you find yourself in an argument with a person like this, just take a step back and analyze the situation. Try and see if it is worth all of the stress to get your own way.

How Your Body Deals with Stress and Conflict

Stress and conflict and young adultsIf you learn how to manage your stress and analyze situations better, you will greatly improve your quality of life. Your body uses the NeuroEndoMetabolic Stress ResponseSM system in order to manage internal and external stress. There are six main responses to stress which are neuro-affective, cardionomic, hormonal, metabolic, detoxification and inflammatory. What happens is your brain receives a distress signal. Then it sends out a chemical message via neurotransmitters and hormones to the area that is affected by stress in order to resolve the issue. Your NeuroEndoMetabolic Stress Response system is made up from your neuroendocrine system and works with the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal hormonal axis. Your adrenal glands will secrete the hormone cortisol when you are under stress. If the stress increases your adrenal gland may have a hard time keeping up and the result is Adrenal Fatigue Syndrome. AFS is a condition that causes a whole slew of everyday problems from lack of energy, to easily becoming sick, to even lack of energy and chronic pain. AFS is a condition where over time your adrenal gland is overused and your hormones become out of balance. In order to remedy some of this it is important to reduce the stress you have in your life. So by analyzing your stressful situations and avoiding certain stressors you can manage the stress put on your body and keep yourself healthy overall.

© Copyright 2013 Michael Lam, M.D. All Rights Reserved.

It doesn't matter which way - stress and conflict are everywhere