TedX Brussels Interview

I was kindly asked for an interview by TEDx Brussels to give my ideas about the Deeper Future and this to complement their full speaker program to which I hope to be invited to one day 😉

“This is no Joke”: Stress in the Deeper Future

Photo+by+Bibbi+Abruzzini

Photo by Bibbi Abruzzini

“Did you know that stress shrinks your brain? This is no joke,” says Tom Meyers, an Osteopath and Stress Coach who works with patients suffering from work-related stress. TEDxBrussels interviews Meyers to understand how to cope with our high-pressure world and the unnecessary stress we experience multiple times per day.

1. Why has stress become such a problem for our health, relationships and economy? 

First, lets look at what stress is. Stress is an autonomic biological survival response resulting from a near-instantaneous sequence of neurological, hormonal and physical changes to protect the body from danger.

The changes involved in a stress response, often referred to as the ‘fight and flight response’, are various. They might cause an increase in heart rate, blood pressure, muscle tension, and the hormones adrenalin and cortisol. At the same time the immune response is inhibited, digestion slowed down, libido suppressed, and heart rate variability decreases.

Unfortunately this response hasn’t had an update since prehistoric times. The stress response was a great bio-defense mechanism for when we were facing physical threats. However, it is not so apt to the psychosocial challenges that our society faces today – excessive workloads, deadlines, poor management, information overload and so on. Our biology hasn’t been able to update itself to face the new environmental stressors and here lies our first challenge.

The second challenge is that these new stressors are more chronic in nature. The kind and duration of stressors we face have changed but not the stress response itself. The consequence is that the body finds itself having less and less time to relax, recuperate and regenerate.  In the RRR-mode our immune response is boosted, digestion and libido is turned up, and heart rate, blood pressure, muscle tension are reduced, and hormone levels rebalanced and heart rate variability increases.

Did you know that stress shrinks your brain? This is no joke. Increased levels of cortisol changes the vascular flow and glucose distribution in certain parts of your brain like the hippocampus which is related to memory, and the prefrontal cortex which is implicated with consciousness, personality, decision making and social behaviour. No wonder there is an increase in depression and burnout.

A third challenge is that it seems that we’ve forgotten that we’re humans. Being human comes with a body and that body has different needs than our mind. We’re mind-driven and never think if our body can handle the objectives set by our mind. I call this the “copy-pasting” phenomenon. For example some people are always active and go as far as feeling a sort of guilt when they‘re not doing something. Yet the body’s biological design is one where action needs to makes way for relaxation in order to recuperate and regenerate. On top of that when we do take time to relax we tend to make the wrong choices. The example that I give in presentations is of someone saying “I’m going to relax this evening and watch a horror movie”… What!?

We are living in a culture where health promoting behaviour has become – unbelievable but true – inappropriate. An example: no one questions a smoker taking a cigarette break but when a non-smoker takes a break for some fresh air he or she feels often guilty, stigmatised. Do you recognize this?

To sum this up in one simple phrase: we’re facing a conflict between biology and culture and it makes us sick, costing society billions and more it is killing us.

But now comes the question, is biology to blame?

2. How do you help people around the world to reduce the pain of stress? 

My health practice, presentations and workshops are based on three pillars: To help you – to help you help yourself – to help you, help yourself and others.

As an Osteopath and Stress Coach for Body & Mind I help people by allowing the body to “reset” and return to ease. My patients initially came to me to treat physical aliments, gradually experiencing great improvements in terms of how they dealt with stress, clarity of mind and decision making. Overall they felt lighter, as if a weight had been lifted from their body and mind. Now 10 years and 2 clinical trials later I’ve been able to demonstrate that the approach I have developed has indeed an effect on both body and mind. It results in a reduction of perceived musculoskeletal pain, anxiety, stress and an increase in heart rate variability.

Research, combined to personal experience, has given me plenty of insights. With the rise of the information age we’ve become disconnected and less socially conscious. We have forgotten that we are simultaneously a whole and a part of a larger society. It is time to go back to the future, retrace our steps and come to terms again with what it means to be human.  With such understanding we can lay new foundations to grow and thrive instead of merely survive. And believe me when I say that thriving is easier than you think if you don’t let yourself stand in the way.

3. Why is managing stress important in the context of the Deeper Future? 

Our society will face extra challenges ranging from global warming to terrorism; as a result, stressors will increase whether we like it or not.

We are already suffering. To put that suffering in figures: here in Belgium alone 1.1 million or 10% of the population takes antidepressants, 13.5 million boxes of sleeping pills are sold a year, 1 in 4 employees and 1 in 5 doctors are at risk of burn-out and the cost of sick workers exceeds that of the cost of unemployment.

If we don’t start to do something today, individuals will become more self-centred, anxious, depressed, burned-out, tense – and less creative, less intelligent, less social, less tolerant. The risk is that over time we will wipe ourselves out.

To thrive again in the face of change…

a good start is understanding and managing stress.

This improvement is accessible to all and has been proven to yield good results in a very short spam of time. One step at a time, we can make the changes needed to transform the world. Every individual must become a change agent instead of getting stuck in the ‘Que Sera, Sera’ mindset . A deeper, more meaningful and mindful future is in our hands. It is a choice that must be translated into action.

4. What is your vision of the Deeper Future? 

Despite the challenges we are going to face, I’m still very optimistic about the future. However, more and more people are asking questions, driven by the feeling that we can’t go on living like this. As a response, we are witnessing an increase in co-creation living and work spaces, complimentary therapies as well as documentaries shedding light on the obscure hunting our world.

I experience this every day in my work as a health practitioner and public speaker. People are seeking to live a more meaningful life and are realising that health is essential to realizing their dreams. More and more people are willing to spend time and money to re-take health in their own hands. We are calibrating our minds, getting ready for a higher level of being where less is more. The Deeper Future is… bright! However, how bright it will be depends on our health and how “light” we’ll become.

TomTom Health Navigator

Interview published on the TedX Brussels Blog: TedXBrussels.eu

2016 is yours to create

Do you, like me sense that we have arrived at a critical moment in time? At one side there is the noticeable change in climate, the increase in terror and although we have more means to be healthy there are more sick people now then ever before.

Where are we going from here? What will the future hold for us?

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Well, you can sit by and wait for the future to happen and live by the outlook “que sera sera…” and with that also be contented with what you get. Or, you can say “I have a Dream…” and create your view of tomorrow. Whatever choice of view you decide today belief and behaviour is what will shape the future. Do you trust the belief and behaviour of others and wait for them to create the change, or like me envision and be to change you want to see in the world? Part of being human is that you have free will and thus a choice to undergo, level-to or rise up to the challenge.

So what do you want from 2016?

Whatever path you choose, be good to you, always.

TomTom Health Navigator

For info on consultations, upcoming workshops or presentations visit Reaset.me

The Pursuit of Happiness

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Tom Meyers offers seven tips on the road to true contentment
Article published in Together Magazine 54 December 2014

The promotion of wellbeing is essential to the pursuit of happiness. Self-Realisation or honing and living your potential and the sense of fulfilment it brings you is one way to promote that wellbeing.

However, self-realisation, being in alignment with your life’s purpose, is a long-term process, a life-long mission, to be enjoyed every step of the way as there is no true end to self-realisation – it is more like a direction than a destination.

Just like a pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela, it’s not about arriving, it’s about the experiences, the teachings on the way, the stories, the landscapes, the smells, the tastes of the local delicacies, the culture and, of course, the victory over oneself, having walked the distance and fulfilled a dream.

When you arrive you do look back on your achievement, contemplating on how you did it and then look towards the future, ready for the next challenge on your path. Self-Realisation is being in perpetual discovery of oneself, of pealing off the layers, in order to come closer to the real you.

Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness are also about short-term objectives. To have a vision and become who you were born to be is essential, but living is about here and now. Do not get caught up in the vision itself and forget to live in this moment. And that moment is very much in peril in today’s hectic, online, harder, better, faster and stressful environment, where time becomes as elusive as our health, wellbeing and happiness.

You can change the tide and become a master of your own happiness and live a life where you manage your stress. Stress is after all an essential survival response and part of being human. If you’re living a super-human life, stress does become a nuisance.

Research suggests that up to 40% of happiness depends on our habits and activities.

How to promote health, wellbeing and happiness in seven simple steps:

Step 1: Take time-out

If not you, who will do it for you? Taking breaks is essential and short breaks now and then help you to make up time afterwards. This might be counter-intuitive but it’s true. For example when you struggle writing, when you hit that wall, go for a walk, breathe in some fresh air. You’ll feel more focus afterwards.

Step 2: ‘Return to Ease’

Numerous scientific studies have proven that breathing exercises, where you become mindful of your breath and induce a sense of calm and joy, a meditation or a mindfulness exercise, help to reduce anxiety, treat depression, reverse the effects of stress and help you to be more focused. The more you practice the quicker you’ll get back into the zone after a stressful moment.

Step 3: Inner forgiveness

Can you forgive yourself? There is something very liberating in inner forgiveness, which changes your attitude towards a past experience. To be the observer of yourself, your thoughts, your feelings and to forgive yourself by accepting what was and to let go of the anger, fear, rage and other emotions that you feel when recalling an unpleasant memory, to detach from past experiences and to let bygones be bygones. In the process of self- observation and changing your attitude, you self-correct, heal wounds and ultimately alter the direction of your future.

Change your dream and your world changes.

Step 4: Gratefulness

What have you been grateful for recently? Practicing grateful living as inspired by the teachings of Br. David Steindl-Rast is a universal practice that fosters personal transformation, cross-cultural understanding, interfaith dialogue, intergenerational respect, non-violent conflict resolution and ecological sustainability. Instead of seeing the worst in everything, start seeing the opportunities. Stop complaining, pointing the finger at others and take an observer‘s perspective. What has this situation taught you? Then be grateful for the lesson learned.

Step 5: Compassion and altruism

When is the last time you helped someone? Research suggests that meaningful social

interaction helps you to reduce stress and enjoy better mental and physical health.

Step 6: Hugs

Our society is deprived of touch, especially single people and the elderly, and it has a detrimental effect on their health. Hugs have healing power, even hugging yourself. Hugs trigger the release of the hormone oxytocin which is known to be important for trust and a sense of wellbeing by reducing fear. A hug a day keeps…

Step 7: Creativity

When was the last time you created something? Knitting, painting, cooking, ironing, doing the dishes or hands on, physical work are all activities with an end result, which help you gain resilience and prevent and treat depression.

In other words the ‘pursuit of happiness’ is in your hands.

For more health and wellness tips, tune in to the feature Health Matters on www.radiox.eu or visit www.tommeyers.be

TomTom Health Navigator

http://www.togethermag.eu/sites/default/pdf/TOGETHER54.pdf

Tenets of Health

Transcript of the Feature ‘Health Matters’ on Radio X from 15 December 2014

I’m Tom Meyers and welcome to the last regular episode of Health Matters for this year.

In the last 14 episodes I‘ve taken you an a journey to find answers to the question: What is health?

We all seek health but are we ready to take up our responsibility to give it at least a chance to express itself? Are we willing to look into our own bosom and act today rather than wait till someone else does it for us as I can tell you with certainty that day will never come…

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As soon as we are born we know one thing for sure the body will die. However from that moment of birth until your last day, your body – by nature – is genetically programmed towards health which in other words means that it strives for unity or wholeness through creating a physiological dynamic equilibrium.

That dynamic equilibrium however is being challenged more than ever before through our changing environment that leads us astray from nature towards an artificial unsustainable IT dominated culture that is in conflict with our biological system that hasn’t changed since prehistory.

However health and our current technological environment don’t have to be mutually exclusive. Both systems have laws that govern them and what we need to find is the right milieu where both support each other and not work against each other as is the case now.

As the IT world doesn’t stop expanding and renewing itself it isn’t there that we need to start our quest for change or reflection on health matters. Health on the other hand is being halted even though we have more means to our disposition to stay and be healthy we do get sicker by the day not only individually bot also as a society.

So why not add to your list of new years resolutions the intention to reflect upon the essence of health and to implement health behaviour?

To get you started here are a few tenants you might like focus on:

  • Health is in my hands it is my responsibility.
  • I’ll be mindful of what I think and say as thoughts alter my biology.
  • What I eat I become.
  • I will remember that what I send out comes back, what I saw, I reap, what I give I get, what I see in others exists in me.
  • I am human, not super human.
  • I will find out and never again ignore what my heart beats for.
  • Unless you start caring about myself no one will.
  • Don’t live another ones dream live your own there is room for all.
  • Have less be more.
  • Know that you are awesome

Well, that’s it from me this year I hope I’ve been able to inspire you with the information shared here in Health Matters on Radio X. The English commercial radio station that has a heart for you.

Rest me to say may love and light accompany you during the holiday season and be good to you always.

TomTom Health Navigator

Happy-Holidays

When you like more information about my presentations or consultations or when you just want to get in touch, then visit the website www.tommeyers.be

Soul-Purpose (part 3)

Transcript of the Feature ‘Health Matters’ nr. 51 on Radio X from 1 December 2014

I’m Tom Meyers and welcome to another episode of Health Matters. In Health Matters I share with you my professional experience as an osteopath and stress coach, bring you scientific insights and pass on practical tips how to manage stress and improve your health and well-being.

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In last weeks episode, I shed light on the second of the three questions where you ask yourself: What do others admire in me? Which is the reverse perspective of the first question and gives you insights into whom or what you attract. Attract just like a magnet so to speak and thus without really doing anything to attract it in the first place.

This question can also be looked into differently. You could observe what people have said to you that you are good at or feel drawn to you for?

It’s what you resonate outwardly… and that people pick up without you having to do anything for it… Like a personal beacon coming from deep within. Have you ever noticed how successful people radiate… yes that kind of vibration comes from being in their element, in their personal Power.

First question ‘what do you admire in others ‘ was you versus others, the second ‘What do others admire in you’ others versus you that leaves a question you with yourself and that is exactly what the third question is all about and it goes – What have you done that truly made you happy -.

Take a moment to revisit past events and observe all the moments where you had a blissful feeling, a feeling of belonging or where you felt and thought if I would do this for the rest of my life I would be happy.

What was it about that moment that made you feel that way. What made you so happy? … and no it wasn’t that moment where you were lying on a beach drinking your favourite cocktail… I’m not taking about those moments… nice and blissful as they are it’s not a talent as such… However travelling can be. Some people feel better when they move around… others prefer to stay in one place.

But it could be for example when you were creating a presentation for  a unique occasion and for which you had to do research, write a speech and then give the speech and where afterwards people came up to you asking how many times you had done this already while it was your first time… yep that happened to me… and from that experience I distilled that I actually loved research on a topic I was passionate about and that I loved standing in front of people and share information that I was actually good at it without too much effort and from which I then summarised as being blessed with the talents of a researcher and teacher.

From question one and two I distilled communicator, traveller and therapist…

So for me 5 talents… 5 building blocks… 5 ingredients that I needed to explore. Ok to put things in perspective I did this exercise 14 years ago when I was 30 I was unhappy, depressed. I was working in the catering business as a waiter and ran my own little deli. So nothing at all to do with the talents I had just discovered and that are part of my life today.

What are yours?

Next week we’ll continue the journey and start the process of putting those talents to good use.

But before I leave here is a quote by Edgar Cayce in line with our quest

For life is, and experience is, what each soul makes of it. Fulfilling the soul’s purpose is a greater service, a greater joy than may be had by him who may have built a city or have conquered a nation.”

Something to reflect upon the coming week. Have a great day, and I’ll catch up with you again next week.

For more information about my presentations or consultations or when you just want to get in touch visit my website www.tommeyers.be

TomTom Health Navigator

Some aims make you sick

Transcript of the Feature ‘Health Matters’ nr. 46 on Radio X from 20 October 2014

I’m Tom Meyers and welcome to another episode of Health Matters. In Health Matters I share with you my professional experience as an osteopath and stress coach, bring you scientific insights and pass on practical tips how to manage stress and improve your health and well-being.

In last weeks episode, I shared that you have to be careful what you aim for, as some aims can make you sick. What aims aren’t good for you, the ones that are ego driven and aren”t in line with your unconscious mind or subconscious program, or what I call for myself my soul purpose.

JP Sears, a holistic coach has a great video on youtube the law of attraction delusion which I will put on my website and highly recommend it.

http://www.innerawakeningsonline.com

In his video he illustrates that because our ego is in need for love it thinks that it is the most powerful force in the Universe and thus thinks it can be do and have everything it sets it mind to it. Just think about how dangerous that would be.

From a neuroscience point of view our higher cognitive functioning, free will and awareness just like writing, planning and reasoning are processed in the outer layer of our brain called the neocortex. Just under the neocortex emotions and memory are processed in an area called the limbic system. Subconscious processes like the stress response, regulation of all vital systems are in the deeper more central layers of the brain and is connected with your spinal cord. Some scientist believe, that these layers from reptilian brain to neocortex are linked with evolution from primitive to more protective and social beings to the present stage of our evolution with higher cognitive functions like speaking, writing, planning, symbolic reasoning and past present future thinking.

Triune Brain Theory

Image from 

http://www.leaderthoughtship.com/2012/11/leader-thoughtship-new-blog.html

Although the neocortex is the biggest part of our brain taking up about 70 % of the total volume when it comes to which part controls what it isn’t the volume that is important but the connections between the different layers.

Connections are neurones and just like highways they go in a certain direction. That direction dictates who controls what. As an example if you could consciously control your heartbeat by just a thought that would mean that there must be a direct link from your outer layer of your brain that part of your brain that controls your heartbeat which is situated centrally in the reptilian brain. Does that exist? No However is there a link from your heart centre to your emotions and conscious brain? Yes.

There are 70% more connections from the centre of your brain to the outer layers of your brain. That means there are 70% more influences from your subconscious, innate programming to your cognitive and decision making centres… no tell me who or what is in control?

Can you have, do, be anything you set your mind to?

With all this in mind it’s time for sharing insights on how you can find your potential and start your journey towards a more meaningful life, happier and healthier life.

So Tune in next week for another episode of Health Matters here on radio X. Meanwhile, have great week and why not subscribe to the Health Matters blog or Facebook page so you don’t miss any future feature or bonus episodes and articles. You can find the links on my website www.tommeyers.be

Extra:

Here is another video that I saw appearing on my Facebook news feed that illustrates how positive thinking from a scientific point of isn’t always good for you.

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Just keep an open mind and listen to your heart.

RadioX

Health a biopsychosocial process

Transcript of the Feature ‘Health Matters’ nr. 41 on Radio X from 22 September 2014

HEALTH

I’m Tom Meyers and welcome to another episode of Health Matters. In Health Matters I share with you my personal experience as an osteopath and stress coach, bring you scientific insights and practical tips how to manage stress and improve your health and well-being.

As seen last week Health is a dynamic, biological, psychological and social or in short a biopsychosocial process that changes and adapts itself constantly to the needs of the moment. Health doesn’t mean the absence of dis-ease. Believe it or not dis-ease is sometimes essential to keep the health balance. Ok you might now declare me insane but just keep listening and let me explain.

On a biological level, when you had too much to drink you’ve intoxicated yourself and the best thing to restore the balance is to get that alcohol out of your system, yes I mean being sick.

To illustrate a psychological example well think of the moments you were really down, depressed and rebounded. That dip triggered a process from which you learned and elevated yourself. Socially it can be like difficulties at work that you’ve overcome. I’m describing here dynamic processes that I’m sure you’ve experienced. Problem arrises when that excess alcohol stays inside of you, you stay depressed or you don’t transcend the difficulties at work. Health then can’t express itself anymore and illness, or in other words a state of not being in full health sets in.

The list of examples where dis-ease is not the opposite of health is endless, but let me highlight one more. Ageing, yes becoming older. There are many theories on how old we can get. Some say our body is made to get up to 150 years but so far no one has ever reached that age by my knowing except in the Bible. I’m not saying it isn’t possible. A Dutch scientist deducted from an bio-evolutionary perspective that 54 is the age for which we are made. In the sense that we’re here to bring unto this world another generation and as soon as that generation can live independently, we’ve reached out purpose. He goes on saying that many people fall into a deep hole when the kids are out of the house, as – exactly from that biological perspective the purpose – the goal has been reached and we come face to face with the question for which we haven’t prepared ourselves sufficiently: What now…?

Whatever you believe, from a cellular perspective there is a limit of how many times a cell can divide… this is called the Hayflick Limit. When we’re lets say ¾ of the way a cell can divide and the cell isn’t as vibrant as when we were born well that has an effect on your health but does that mean You’re ill? I don’t want to answer that one but it does mean that we’re changing with age.

Your mind on the other hand stays internally young. Ask an 80 year old how old he or she feels within and you will rarely and probably never get 80.

That said: How old do you feel inside?

So lets recapitulate. Health is a dynamic biopsychosocial process, a balance where short-term dis-ease is part of the equation and thus, that being ill, now and then is ok. Why do I take time to illustrate this… because our western society has been conditioning us that dis-ease is bad, something to be avoided at all times or when an illness state set in to get rid of it as quickly as possible with whatever means possible and without any consideration of the lessons that can be learned from it. Y

es some problems are transcending the control of the individual like environmental pollution and its influence on our health. But still if you can already take the responsibility of that part that you can have control over you will experience health benefits and stay longer in balance.

That’s all for this episode of Health Matters have a great day and I’ll catch up with you again next week here on Radio X or why not subscribe to the Health Matters podcast or Facebook page so you don’t miss any future feature or bonus episodes and articles. You can find the appropriate links on my website www.tommeyers.be

Health Matters continues…

Transcript of the Feature ‘Health Matters’ on Radio X from 1 September 2014

I’m Tom Meyers and welcome to Health Matters. In the upcoming weekly new episodes of Health Matters I will share with you my personal experience as an osteopath and stress coach, bring you scientific insights and practical tips about the wondrous existential matters of health and well-being.

Yes, ”Health”, we all seek it, spent lots of money, time and effort running after it and still it seems we are further away from it then ever before. Why?

We go to such lengths that we are prepared to change or replace unhealthy and even healthy body parts without question in our quest for health. We take more pills and supplements then ever before and still ‘health and wellbeing’ eludes us as more people suffer from anxiety, depression, burn-out and cancer. Why?

Especially in our Western society where we have more means to be and stay healthy, gain more knowledge by the day, have more technology to our disposal and were trillions are spent on research annually we tend to get sicker by the day. Why?

We have more resources and time – although you might not think so – to take care of our health. So I ask the questions why and how come that we are making ourselves so sick, depressed, burned-out to the point that some end up taking their own lives?

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Is HEALTH slipping through our fingers?

Health!? What message or lesson is there to be learned that we don’t seem to get, that we are too blind to see, are we too afraid to ask?

Have you ever asked yourself the question, what is health? Truly took time to reflect upon it’s meaning and come up with the key elements needed to give health a change to be?

If not, why not?

In Health Matters I will take you on a journey over the coming weeks and maybe months to shed a light unto the topics of health and wellbeing. A light that my work as an osteopath, stress coach and researcher in body-mind medicine has brought me and that I like to share with you. On this journey, let me be your Health Navigator your Tom Tom for health and wellbeing.

So please join me from mid september onwards every week on Health Matters here on Radio X.

You can also follow Health Matters via Facebook, my blog on WordPress and as a podcast on Mixcloud. Links for all and more you can find on my website www.tommeyers.be

Healthy Workplaces Manage Stress

Transcript of the Feature ‘Health Matters’ on Radio X from 28 April 2014

I’m Tom Meyers Stress coach and welcome to this weeks episode of Health Matters.

On the 15th of April The European Agency for Safety and Health at Work launched the campaign ‘Healthy Workplaces Manage Stress’

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As a stress coach and regular speaker in companies about ‘Understanding and Managing Stress’ I didn’t want to let this campaign pass by unnoticed and because I agree with the agencies statement that safety and health at work is everyone’s concern. It’s good for you and It’s good for business.

Work-related stress is – after back and neck pain – the second most frequently reported work-related health problem in Europe – and around half of workers consider work-stress it to be common in their workplace?

50 to 60% of all lost working days can be contributed to work related stress and those absences tend to be longer that those arising from other causes.

The most common causes of work-related stress are job reorganisation or job insecurity, working long hours or excessive workload and being bullied or harassed at work.

Other causes of work-related stress are:

conflicting demands,

ineffective communication,

lack of clarity over roles,

mismatch between job demands and competence,

lack of involvement in decision making,

lack of support, poor interpersonal relationships

and unhealthy work-life balance.

In the European agencies poll also determined that 4 in 10 workers think that stress is not handled well in their workplace.

Total cost to companies and the social security system … hundreds of billions… and that’s a lot of money.

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So how do you recognise that you’re suffering from work-related stress? Well lets look at the symptoms which can be divided in 4 categories:

Emotional changes including anxiety, fatigue and poor relationships with colleagues

Behavioural changes these can be poor timekeeping, carelessness, aggressiveness

Cognitive issues like difficulties in concentration or making decisions, reduced  creativity and productivity.

Physical signs are recurrent neck, back or shoulder pain, frequent colds or spells of flu, stomach or bowel problems and high blood pressure..

And if work-related stress isn’t managed properly it can eventually lead to burn-out and depression.

Although work-related stress is described as – not an individuals fault but an organisational issue – it needs to be tackled from both ends.

If you leave it all for your boss to sort out you might be in for a long wait. In Health Matters I address insights about health and wellbeing and share information what you can do to help yourself to stay healthy and happy.

Unlike what you might expect but happiness and health do not just happen… they are learned skills.

For more information about the Healthy Workplace Manages Stress campaign go to healthy-workplaces.eu

I’m Tom Meyers health coach and contributor of though to a healthier way of living.

If you like to know more about my consultation work and stress management presentations then visit the website tommeyers.be

What is Health?

Transcript of the Feature ‘Health Matters’ on Radio X from 7 April 2014

I’m Tom Meyers Stress coach and welcome to this weeks episode of Health Matters.

Health Awareness Week Radio X

Today is World Health Day and the start of the Health Awareness Week here on Radio X. A week were the question ‘What is Health?’ will be discussed, reflected upon and given the attention it deserves.

Last week I shared with you the definition of health and reflected on the element if health is a state or a process.

Today lets look at the origin of the word health. Health comes from the Germanic word heil meaning being whole or wholeness.

Now lets use this wholeness reference to our question ‘what is health?’ as you could reframe it to What does it mean to be whole?

Mm sound even more difficult to answer then what is health well think again. Go back into memory lane and think of that day where everything flowed, where you felt one with yourself and the environment, even the Universe itself.

You remember that day? Yes that day, the day where all your senses seemed more in tune and that you could handle anything that was put in front of you.

That day, you – felt ‘whole’. You see that was easier then you thought at first wasn’t it?

But what was it that made you feel that way? Have you ever taken the time to reflect what the elements where that made that moment so special?

If not then I  really recommend you to take some time to reflect on this as you might find some amazing truths about yourself. And those truths leading to knowing and being mindful of yourself are great contributors to living your wholeness and that in turn has a positive effect on your health.

When you put that knowledge to good use I can assure you it will put into motion a great health promoting dynamic process.  And I say this from personal experience.

And yes it takes time and with our never ending to do lists it seems impossible to take that time-out but then that never ending to do list makes you ill and taking time-out makes you healthy… mmm yes eeuh… What? It’s your choice. It’s part of that human trait you call free-will that makes you responsible to do or do not.

Anyway I hope you continue listening to the various contributions on ‘What is Health’ during the Health Awareness Week. Interact with us on Facebook or email. Tell us your interpretation of health and continue the conversation with your family friends and colleagues.

And get your copy of the April edition of Together Magazine where you can read this weeks Health Matters feature (p.34-37) and lots more contributions on health and wellbeing. Don’t find a copy then go to their website  togethermag.eu

Together Magazine 47

I’m Tom Meyers health coach and contributor of though to a healthier way of living.

If you like to know more about my consultation work and stress management presentations then visit the website tommeyers.be