New Revelation in stress science. That Oxytocin!
The cuddling hormone released when you hug someone – often known as love hormone, the agent in sexual reproduction is actually not just a emo hormone, its practically your savior from stress. It’s also deals with stress.
I just came across a very interesting thing this morning. A research in science which points out how the phrase “stress is bad for you” is actually the cause of many deaths and not the fact that you’re a stress patient. Confused? Lemme simplify it for you.
In very plain language it just means that stressing about “stress” is the main problem for your health. Otherwise, having a stress disorder and being positive about it instead of freaking out is what keeps you normal. And not just THAT – but also, dealing with it the positive way , meaning: Believing that stress is literally good for you, actually makes stress good for your health. It won’t harm you if you become friends with it and let it flow in your system. That sounds risky, han? But that’s the truth.
It becomes helpful when you embrace your stress and in return it makes you social. At least it demand of you to become social as a natural defence mechanism against bad health but if you don’t answer to its call by not reaching out to people and go for human bonding. That’s where and how you’re letting your stress kill you. You gotta love it well.
Long scientific story short. Oxytocin is actually not just a cute hormone but a stress hormone which is released when you are under stress as a (Body’s Natural Defense Mechanism) It begins to flow in you and makes you yearn for affection and help.Yeah. That explains why we badly want somebody around or near us to listen to our anxieties and worries when we are stressed. Letting it all out eventually cures us of bad mental health. Next time when it happens, know that its oxytocin telling you to reach out and talk to people when under stress.
Now that you know , stress can be handled as a positive force for your body, you’ll find this hormone helping you tremendously when you help it by doing exactly what its wants you to do. This was just one part I learned. What’s even more cool about this is the part where I translated this research into what Islam teaches us to do about stress. It gives us Exactly the same practical strategy to deal with it.
Oxytocin/Patience: A Mediator of Anti Stress!
And endure patiently, your patience is not but from Allah. (16:127)
So wait with patience for the Decision of your Lord, and be not like the Companion of the Fish – when he cried out (to Us) while he was in deep sorrow. (68:48)
Oh you who believe! Seek help with patient perseverance and prayer, for God is with those who patiently persevere. 2: 153
And my favourite ayah of all. “And be patient. Surely, Allah is with those who are patient.” (8:46) وَاصْبِرُوا ۚ إِنَّ اللَّهَ مَعَ الصَّابِرِينَ
Patience (sabr) is often a word misunderstood as an act which is weakening and those of who are weak. In short, if you’re are scared of something and can’t deal with it, you just say I’m trying to do sabr. I’m trying to be patient.
Is that true? Is that what patience really is? oh yeah?
Well guess what! Here’s the new cool definition for Patience: “It’s the cool act on the block that keeps you positive and head strong!”
So when wiki says “Patience is the capacity to accept or tolerate delay, trouble, or suffering without getting angry or upset.” I say is, you’re totally underestimating this word. When in reality, This word is the synonym for positivity.
Patience is that strong positive attribute and force you can develop inside you that practically makes you 1000 times stronger in front of your anxieties, worries and every type of enemy in this dunya. And that’s EXACTLY why Allah advises us to observe patience when hit by calamity or stress because yeah! He already knows how tremendously powerful you can become when you take the positive approach towards every stressful circumstances.
In a typical stress response,your heart rate goes up, and your blood vessels constrict. And this is the reason why chronic stress is sometimes associated with cardiovascular diseases. Its not really healthy to be in this condition all the time. But in the study, when participants viewed their stress response as helpful, meaning the sweating the anxiety and the increased heart rate, when they viewed all of this as a positive response by believing the faster breathing is actually good. It means its getting more oxygen to your brain– believing all this– their blood vessels stayed relaxed. Amazing! Isn’t it?
Their heart was still pounding but now the cardiovascular profile is much healthier.
Take a look at the normal and abnormal blood flow below. Once your artery is narrowed and blocked by plaque, you’re at a risk of heart attack. Your heart valves shouldn’t be blocked.
And this is how your heart actually suffers when you’re under stress meaning Impatient. See the constricted blood vessels. But if you stay calm, patient and take things positive way, your blood vessels go relaxed. Even though they are still under stress but it’s not affecting them in a bad way. They are being strong. (I did some editing on this picture to explain it better)
That’s what new stress science has revealed that how you think about stress matters. It can literally make you experience a great biological change. A positive one born out of a negative state.
So next time when you’re faced with stress about anything, be positive. Be patient. Stress wants you to be patient and positive. Don’t shrug this act of “patience” off thinking it’s the lame thing or the weak. Be cool. Also Be understanding towards oxytocin. Because Oxytocin helps you reach out for sunshine, for support, for things and activities that are positive and not rot alone in room. It paves way for Patience, and confirms how patience is a Practical Strategy to handle stress. Subhan Allah. Allah knew it all along that is why so much emphasize on patience in Quran.
Anas ibn Malik reported: I heard the Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, say, “Allah said: If I afflict my servant in his two dear eyes and he remains patient, then he will be compensated with Paradise.” Sahih Bukhari 5329
I think I better consider becoming a Islamic Psychologist.