Stress: Signs, Symptoms and Management
Stress has only been found to be beneficial if it is short-lived. This guide aims to give tips on managing and reducing stress, what is stress?
Stress is a common concern in modern life. We are faced with many demands and at times, life can be stressful and challenging.
What is stress?
Stress is often described as feeling overloaded, wound-up, tense and worried, and occurs when we face a situation we feel we can’t cope with.
Some stress can be helpful. It can motivate us or spur us to perform to the best of our ability.
Whilst stress is a normal human reaction that most people will experience from time to time if stress is prolonged or severe, it can negatively impact our physical and mental well-being.
Signs and symptoms of stress
Stress can cause many different symptoms. When we are faced with a stressful situation our body releases stress hormones such as adrenaline and cortisol. If stress is prolonged and chronic then people can develop a range of symptoms over time. Some of the most common are as follows:
Psychological symptoms such as worry, fear, anger, tearfulness, irritability, anxiety, helplessness, difficulties with concentration or memory, or feeling overwhelmed
Physical symptoms such as heart palpitations, fatigue, sleep disturbance, insomnia, stomach upset, diarrhea, frequent headaches, muscular aches and pains, weakened immune system and high blood pressure.
Strategies for stress relief
You can’t avoid stress, but you can stop it from becoming overwhelming by practising some daily strategies:
Exercise when you feel symptoms of stress coming on. Even a short walk can boost your mood.
At the end of each day, take a moment to think about what you’ve accomplished — not what you didn’t get done.
Set goals for your day, week and month. Narrowing your view will help you feel more in control of the moment and long-term tasks.
Consider talking to a therapist or your healthcare provider about your worries.
Accessing support for stress
There are many ways that people strive to cope with stressors and feelings of stress in their lives. There are both helpful and unhelpful ways of managing stressors and stress.
If you feel that stress is impacting on your ability to enjoy life, a psychologist may be able to help.
Therapy can help support people with life’s curve balls, the hard times and the tough stuff so you don’t have to go it alone. If you’re feeling like you are stuck in a rut, as though you can’t catch a break or maybe that it’s all a bit too much, then we’re here to listen. Book an appointment or reach out today to find out more about how we can help you get back on track.