What is stress?
Stress is the feeling of being under too much mental or emotional pressure. Pressure turns into stress when you feel unable to cope. People have different ways of reacting to stress, so a situation that feels stressful to one person may be motivating to someone else.
Many of life’s demands can cause stress, particularly work, relationships and money problems. And, when you feel stressed, it can get in the way of sorting out these demands, or can even affect everything you do. Stress can affect how you feel, think, behave and how your body works. In fact, common signs of stress include sleeping problems, sweating, loss of appetite and difficulty concentrating.
You may feel anxious, irritable or low in self esteem, and you may have racing thoughts, worry constantly or go over things in your head. You may notice that you lose your temper more easily, drink more or act unreasonably.
So, here are some tips for dealing with stress:
- If you're stressed, whether by your job or by something more personal, the first step to feeling better is to identify the cause, and take it from there
- The most unhelpful thing you can do is turn to something unhealthy to help you cope, such as smoking or drinking. Don't rely on alcohol, smoking, caffeine and other bad things as your ways of coping. In a long term period, these unhealthy habits will not solve your problems. They’ll just create new ones, that you'll have to solve later, adding yet more stress to the pile. If you do happen to do this, I suggest finding things to help you stop these bad habits, in order to help you reduce your stress levels. For smoking I saw some chewing gum that is supposed to help you stop smoking.
- Exercise is a great idea when you are stressed. Even though it won’t make your stress disappear, it will reduce some of the emotional feelings that you’re getting, clearing your thoughts and letting you to deal with your problems more calmly.
- Talking to people online while dealing with stress is a brilliant thought outlet. Agood support network of friends and family can ease your work troubles and help you see things in a different way.
- Meet with people, whether this is friends or family, or even work friends. The things we do with friends help us to let go of our stress and allow our mind to relax. We often have a good laugh with them, which is an excellent stress reliever.
- Writing lists with little challenges for yourself is a good stress reliever if it is a work load that you're stressing out over. Setting yourself goals and challenges, whether at work or at home, such as just your jobs for the day, or new fun challenges like learning a new language or a new sport, will help you deal with stress.
- Helping other people deal with their problems is another great way to release stress. Helping people who are often in situations worse than yours will help you put your problems into perspective, and enable you to feel good about yourself for helping other people, most of the time relieving stress. If you don't have time to volunteer, try to do someone a favour and see where it goes from there.
- Prioritise your work. Concentrate on the tasks that will make a real difference- leaving the least important tasks to last. This will reduce your stress massively as if you get the big tasks done first you'll feel relieved and more motivated for the other tasks.