A couple of weeks ago, my 61 year old husband was running on the treadmill at the gym when he felt his left hand and foot grow numb. A trip to the GP confirmed his blood pressure was dangerously high, so he has spent the past 2 weeks while he hasn't been able to work or drive adjusting his diet and exercise regime and popping pills.
There is a human tendency to take our health for granted, to not expect anything to change, to think - even though we know that the thought is quite absurd - that "it will never happen to me."
Although there might be a genetic component to high blood pressure, chronic stress has a cumulative effect. Consistently high levels of the stress hormone, cortisol, in the body not only increases our risk of heart attack and stroke (and remember, without oestrogen menopausal women have the same risk factors for heart disease as men), but can cause a whole host of other issues, including headaches, depression, insomnia, low sex drive, palpitations and a weakened immune system.
It is imperative, then, that we take control. In the Membership, several of the courses are designed to help you get on top of stress. One - 7 steps to stress less - is by mindset coach, Vivienne Joy. I interviewed Vivienne during launch week back in April . and you can watch and/or listen to that interview via this blog post.
As for my husband, he went back to work today, blood pressure at the high end of the normal range, but no longer dangerous, and a determination to find new ways of dealing with the stress he is under. Can an "old dog" learn new tricks? I can only hope.