Good Stress which enables us to stay alert and motivated and has an end point where you can begin wind down and relax.
Then there is Bad Stress (or Chronic Stress), which is a constant emotional and physical burden on you. In order to cope your body produces chemicals and hormones (such as adrenalin), which are supposed to be in the body for only a short period of time. But when the stress remains, so do the chemicals and hormones which can lead to heart problems, high blood pressure, headaches, migraines, depression and nervous breakdowns.
We are all affected by stress differently and we all cope with it differently. For those who don’t know how to cope and carry the burden of chronic stress with them here are some simple ways to stop it from damaging your health and well-being.
- Be aware of how you react to new and different situations. Do you automatically start worrying, ‘What if…?’ Does this keep you up at night? Simply recognising how you react (without judgment) is a step in the right direction to de-stressing.
- Write down what is worrying you. Is any of it out of your control? If so, put it out of your mind. What is within your control? And what steps can you take to manage it?
- Being organised in your home and work situations can help alleviate little stresses. Instead of running around the house before work in search of the car keys, have a set place you always put them. Ensure the children have everything they need for school ready the night before.
- Focus on solutions not the problems. If you focus on what’s wrong, nothing will change. Look at what can be resolved; if you get stuck ask someone for help, sharing with a caring friend can help lift some of the burden.
- If you know you have a stressful time ahead (renovating or moving house, caring for a sick family member), remember to take time out for yourself. Keep your energy levels up with a healthy balanced diet, exercise and doing things you enjoy.