In an ever-changing world full of uncertainty, we must make time for ourselves. Too many people are overworked and hyper-stimulated by issues they can’t control. Setting aside time to relax, breathe, and meditate can be vital to your mental health. Finding peace can be achieved in various ways without prescription drugs or intoxicating substances. When we understand what causes stress and take meaningful steps to change, the results can be incredible. CBD is the latest plant extract showing enormous potential as a natural way to promote a heightened sense of well-being. When combined with proper relaxation methods, CBD can deliver incredible results. In this post, we will discuss the root cause of stress, what we can do to relax, and how CBD can assist our goal of finding peace.

What Causes Stress?

Determining what is creating stress is the first step to improving your quality of life. According to Mind.org, a UK-based mental health advocacy group says that “feelings of stress are normally triggered by things happening in your life.” While we control many aspects of our lives, many external triggers are out of our hands. Self-reflection and relaxation help identify the areas of our lives we can improve and help us deal with external events we have no control over. Below are three of the most significant driving forces for stress. Overworking Our society is entirely backward. We encourage a ‘no days off and ‘go getter’ approach to work without adequately reflecting on how overworking affects our mental health and productivity. Stress can build due to looming deadlines, working without days off, not eating correctly, and not exercising. As we switch to a hybrid work environment, especially women balancing their professional and domestic lives, we must reassess what overworking looks like and take the proper steps forward. Feelings of Uncertainty Never in our lifetimes have we felt so uncertain about the future. Fixating on issues out of our control can cause immense amounts of stress and the feeling of hopelessness. While we have to stay informed, it’s essential to reflect on the consequences of consuming hours of news or social media per day. Not Having Control Over Situations We all feel hopeless at times, whether it is related to work or unprecedented recent events. The feeling of not being in control creates a great deal of stress, especially if your body is overworked and not getting the help it needs to maintain a positive outlook.

The Science of Relaxation

We think of relaxation as taking a load off or going for a walk. Unfortunately, most people fail to truly understand the importance of practicing effective relaxation methods. Relaxation is wrongly viewed as something we do to unwind but don’t realize there is a measurable benefit to properly relaxing. Herbert Benson, MD of Harvard Medical School and the Benson-Henry Institute for Mind-Body Medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital, discovered the benefits of the relaxation response in the 1960s. The relaxation response is simply a state of deep rest that can alter a person’s physical and emotional response to stress. The experience can be achieved through meditation along with word repetition. According to Benson, other methods will also work, “anything that breaks the train of everyday thought will evoke this physiological state.” Benson’s research has shown that eliciting the relaxation response can induce anti-oxidation and anti-inflammation to combat the adverse effects of stress. The study conducted by Benson and his team found that participants that regularly practiced relaxation response physically “affected each of the body’s 40,000 genes and found that, compared with a control group” The relaxation response can be achieved through the following methods:
  • Breathing Exercises
  • Meditation
  • Yoga
  • Cardio

Using CBD for Relaxation

CBD can help achieve a heightened state of relaxation and potentially treat the side effects of stress. While we are far from understanding the true potential of CBD, there are a number of studies that suggest that CBD can help us relax naturally. People susceptible to stress could have a chemical imbalance in their brains due to insufficient endocannabinoids (naturally produced cannabis-like compounds). According to a meta-analysis published in the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI), CBD affects the body by inhibiting enzymes that degrade endocannabinoids. When your body has a healthy flow of endocannabinoids, you are in a much better position to deal with external events. So, when you have an approaching deadline or something on the news upsets you, your brain should respond with neurotransmitters to help you deal with the situation. When you don’t have a healthy flow of endocannabinoids, the reaction could be inadequate, creating a much more challenging situation for the individual. Taking CBD every day, along with regularly practicing relaxation methods, can put your brain in a much better position to find peace in our ever-changing environments.

CBD for Women

CBD also could help women relax when they are facing exclusive female conditions like PMS. While there aren’t any double-blind clinical trials using CBD to treat PMS, many women use CBD to combat the side effects. Gwyneth Paltrow’s brand Goop recently sat down with psychopharmacologist Dr. Julie Holland to discuss CBD’s potential to help women-specific issues. She says that “both (THC and CBD) can help relax the uterine muscle where cramps occur and alleviate many PMS symptoms—but if you don’t like the altered feeling of THC, you can get a lot of PMS relief just using CBD.” We all know that it’s difficult to look within yourself or complete a hot yoga session when experiencing cramps. CBD’s effectiveness in treating the side effects of PMS is still unknown, but according to anecdotal accounts and Dr. Holland, the cannabinoid could help women relax in the worst of circumstances.

Take a Multifaceted Approach to Relaxation

Unfortunately, there isn’t a secret to finding peace in a chaotic world. Neither relaxation response nor CBD is going to instantly solve all your stress-inducing problems. We recommend having a multifaceted plan to combat stress and take the time to relax. Meditation, exercise, self-awareness, and CBD can all be used as tools to improve your quality of life.