Pressure is essential for optimum motivation and performance, problems occur when pressure continues without time to recover or rest, this is the turning point where pressure becomes stress. Stress is not a sign of weakness, it is the consequence of being strong for too long. Affecting people in different ways and at different times, stress is often a combination of mental pressure from personal, social and working lives, creating a sense of overwhelm and an inability to cope along with feeling worn out and stressed before leaving the house. Sometimes there are no clear causes of stress (with some people seeming more susceptible than others); other people will know their stress is: a direct result of a single significant event; a build-up of several smaller things over time; or from high expectations they have on themselves and/or people around them.
Symptoms of Stress
Irritation at those making demands
Self criticism for accepting tasks
A sense of being besieged, exhausted, tired and/or physically run down
Easily irritated or angry at seemingly inconsequential things
Experiencing cynicism, negativity, suspicion and/or irritability
Significant weight loss or gain
Difficulty in falling or staying asleep
Shortness of breath
Indecisiveness, poor judgement, a reduction in quality of work
Unable to appreciate the fun or humour in situations
Experiencing physical ill health, eg headaches, nausea, intestinal disturbances, aches and pains
Change in working practices such as staying late or taking work home
If some of the above resonates with you, you may be suffering from stress. Forget the ‘stiff upper-lip’ thing – it’s overrated and you don’t need to suffer any longer. Everyone deserves to feel relaxed and content. Take steps today to get the fun back in your life.
What Can I Do To Help Myself?
It seems counterintuitive to take on additional tasks, but you can relieve tension by making some time to yourself to do whatever you enjoy, such as: going for a walk; swimming; reading; listening to music; rekindling or taking up a hobby.
Stress can cloud judgement and prevent us from seeing things clearly. Talking to a trusted friend or relative can work by distracting you from stressful thoughts, releasing some of the built-up tension, putting problems into perspective and/or discovering solutions.
Stress can be triggered by a problem that on the surface seems impossible to solve. Finding solutions to your problems will help you feel in control thereby lowering your stress. Write down the problem and find as many solutions as you can. Decide on the good and bad points of each one and select the best solution. Write down each step that you need to do as part of the solution: what will be done, how will it be done, when will it be done, who is involved and where will it take place and most importantly, taking action.
Food and drink can have a big impact on your mood and feelings. Sugary snacks and drinks, such as soft drinks, give your body a temporary energy boost followed by a sharp drop in energy. This “sugar crash” can make you feel tired or irritable, and unable to concentrate. Eating a balance diet at regular times and not skipping meals or drinks can make a big difference to your ability to deal with stress.
Seeking Professional Help
Don’t allow stress prevent you from seeking treatment, sometimes it’s less painful to call in an impartial expert to help, you deserve to be happier. If this seems like you don’t have to suffer a moment longer, you can access help by calling me, Dawn Haworth, on 07818 840 841 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
What Sort of Issues have People Brought To Therapy?
Adjusting to retirement
Anxiety and/or panic attacks
Family stresses and relationship worries
Fear of exams
Lack of confidence and low self esteem
Life changing illness or injury
Separation or divorce
Work related stress