You do yoga five days a week, meditate and even splurge on a monthly massage. So why are you still feeling so agitated all the time? Getting to the bottom of the sources of stress in your life won’t just put a smile on your face. It can also improve the function of your body and mind. Living in a constant state of tension can put you at risk for chronic pain, fertility issues, even heart disease and Type 2 diabetes. Read on for six surprising ways stress can sneak up on you. Eliminate them now so you can get back to your ohm.

You’re too social on social media

Sure, socializing with friends is a great way to live happier and longer. But does logging onto social media sites or relying on email to contact your pals count? Not necessarily, found experts. A dependence on social media sites (from Facebook and Twitter to LinkedIn and Instagram) does not necessarily enhance well-being, say psychiatrists. In one study, in which subjects ramped up their social media usage during a 14-day period, researchers found the participants’ state of happiness decreased quickly as their usage increased. While we’re not sure exactly why this happens, the University of Michigan researchers believe the computer use may deter actual physical interaction, “which has cognitive and emotional replenishing effects,” while triggering “damaging social comparisons” with friends’ and acquaintances’ digital personas.

Quick fix: Balance is key. Remember, hyper-use is defined as spending more than three hours a day on social media sites or sending out more than 120 messages a day. While this amount is extreme, it’s still best to limit usage to a narrow window of time once or twice a day.

Read the full article "Six surprising sources of stress - and how to do away with them" at The Washington Post.