Stressed Out? Here Is What You Need To Know
Are you stressed out? Stress is an everyday problem that can be extremely taxing to people. Whether it comes as the result of a devastating event or just the constant things that make life difficult, stress is just as bad. Many people just pass stress off as a temporary thing that will go away with time.
The problem with that is that they are neglecting the effect that stress can have on the human body when endured over long periods. Stress has been linked to a whole host of physical ailments, including many different types of cancer. Contrary to the popular saying, stress won’t just make you lose your hair. It could cause you to lose your life.
Stress is generally built up over time. It doesn’t discriminate, either. Stress problems can afflict students as they prepare for exams or complete work. It can bother people who are having financial problems or legal problems. Stress can even afflict those who are extremely wealthy. Problems with a business plan or even an issue at home can cause stress in large quantities.
Because stress is such a mental ailment, the treatments for stress must be mostly mental, as well. You can go into the store and purchase aspirin to help with headaches that are caused by stress, but you cant grab a quick fix for the problem off of any shelves. You must attack the problem at its roots to relieve it.
One great way to fight stress is through hypnosis. As a hypnotherapist, I have seen many clients who want to find a way out from under the burden of stress. I also use hypnosis to help clients with smoking issues, gambling issues, and several other problems.
But a great number of my clients suffer from extreme stress. Hypnosis is not just that thing that you see on television or in the movies. It offers a real solution to people who often feel that all hope is lost in their situation.
If you are under the constant cloud of stress that won’t allow you to live a fulfilled life, then maybe you want to consider hypnosis as a form of treatment. It will get to the root of the problems that are causing your stress and will change your outlook from there. Get as much information on hypnosis as you possibly can and make a big change in your life today.
Signs And Symptoms, Causes Of Stress
First of all, let’s understand this. Stress is not the pile of papers sitting on your desk. It’s not the child screaming in the living room, or the clean laundry the dog just dragged out the door. Stress is not the phone that is ringing off the hook, throwing you behind schedule.
Stress is your response to those things. They are stressors, not stress.
A Stressor May or May Not Be a Cause of Stress
When we look for signs and symptoms, causes of stress, we must look at every stressor as a potential cause of stress. I say potential because stressors do not have to cause stress. Different people will respond differently to them, and it is the response, you remember, that is the stress.
For example, a great cause of stress for one secretary may be a stack of documents waiting to be filed. She hates filing because she has no system. She is never sure where to file a given paper, so she puts off all filing. The stack grows, her anxiety grows, her guilt grows, but a lack of expertise paralyzes her. Finally, she becomes ill and takes a day off work.
The substitute secretary takes one look at the stack of documents and sets to work cheerfully. She has developed a filing system and is confident of where she should put the papers. She soon has everything cleared away and rewards herself with a quick 5-minute walk.
The stressor was the pile of documents to be filed. It was the same for both secretaries. One secretary responded with anxiety and guilt, resulting in physical sickness. The other responded with cheerful confidence, resulting in a successful completion. The stressor was not an absolute cause of stress.
Everyday Causes of Stress
Everyday causes of stress are recurrent. They keep coming up.
Here are a few examples.
1. The boss that never has a pleasant word for you can be a cause of stress if you let him. It depends on whether you let him bother you, or whether you decide to take it in stride.
2. The child that daily refuses to get up in time for school can be an everyday cause of stress for the parent that does not take control of the situation.
3. A family member that is always on the phone will become a cause of stress if you want to use the phone and have no control over the situation.
4. Your neighbors barking dog, or even a singing bird on the windowsill is a potential cause of stress, depending on how you respond.
5. The spot on your clothing from food dropped during lunch might be a cause of stress when you go back to work or you might have the emotional resilience to ignore it.
Our days are filled with signs and symptoms, causes of stress to which we will choose either to respond or not to respond.
Occasional Causes of Stress
In addition to potentially hundreds of everyday causes of stress, each of us faces occasional things that may become causes of stress. They may seem bigger, and more difficult to handle.
Each of these three could become a cause of stress.
1. You are relocating. You have to sort, pack, and clean. Then you have to move to a new location. You leave behind your friends and acquaintances. You leave your former life in many ways. Relocation can be a major cause of stress, or you can prepare ahead of time to deal with the emotional changes.
2. Your job is being redefined. There is new, more difficult work to do and little time to do it. This potential cause of stress could make you physically ill unless you organize the work and take control.
3. Family finances are suddenly cut when you or your spouse loses a job. Might this be a cause of stress? It depends on whether you immediately take action to seek new employment, and use your spare time to catch up on little chores around the house.
Each potential cause of stress can overwhelm an individual, or energize them to take on the challenge and turn things around.
Life-Changing Causes of Stress
A stressor in this category is much more likely to become a cause of stress since such changes shake our very roots. Look at these examples, and see if there is a cause of stress you are trying to handle.
1. Serious illness or injury of a family member can quickly become a cause of stress. We find it difficult to respond appropriately to this kind of stressor. Emotionally and mentally, we lack the resilience we need.
2. Separation from a spouse due to marital difficulties, or even due to your job, can also become a cause of stress. Emotional tension may overcome you as your body responds to the parting.
3. Divorce is a too-common cause of stress and one that is difficult to handle with an appropriate response.
4. A major loss of income will be a cause of stress to those who rely too much on finances. Credit difficulties fall into the same group.
5. Finally, the death of a child or spouse is a stressor that almost always will become a cause of stress.
The Underlying Cause of Stress
The ultimate underlying cause of stress is our inner response to losing control of our lives. It is natural for humans to want to control life at every turn. We want to be the masters of our own ships, and be able to determine what will happen to us.
Stressors threaten that control, and we respond by preparing to fight whatever is stealing the control we want or flee from it. Stress is the fight-or-flight response of our bodies.
If all the signs and symptoms, all of the causes of stress were lumped together and labeled with a single phrase, that phrase would be a response to the loss of control.
Stress Management: 10 Practical Steps
The World Health Organization calls stress “the health epidemic of the 21st century.” Stress resulting in illness is the causative factor underlying more than 70% of all visits to the family doctor, medical doctors suggest. What is stress? We all talk about it but what does ‘stress’ mean and how does it affect our bodies?
Dr. Hans Selye, who first noted and described the concept of stress, defines stress as “the non-specific response of the body to any demand made upon it.” Stress is neither good nor bad. The effect of the stress is not determined by the stress itself, rather it is determined by how we handle the stress.
Effects of Stress
1. “Emergency Response”
The emergency response mechanism activates with a physiological change when people believe they are in physical or mortal danger. Pupils dilate blood pressure increases and the production of stress hormones increases.
The body prepares within seconds to respond, which is known as the ‘fight or flight syndrome. The adrenal glands pour out adrenaline and the production of other hormones is increased by the quickly reacting pituitary-adrenal-cortical system of the brain.
This is a healthy, adaptive response to immediate danger but if continually activated, this emergency response may cause a constantly higher-than-normal level of hormone production that can eventually cause physical wear-and-tear on the body. Health problems related to this constantly high level of response include hypertension, headaches, ulcers, heart disease, and increased vulnerability to diabetes and colitis.
2. “General Adaptation Syndrome”
In studies, Selye came to believe that diseases of adaptation such as hypertension could be produced by the abnormal or excessive reaction to stress. The body would increase its supply of hormones to be ready for action to stress. Over a prolonged period of time, excessive stress leads to distress and the accompanying physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual health problems.
Contributing factors to distress include a) your attitude to life and b) your mood (optimistic or pessimistic). Both help to create an atmosphere that assists your defense system in repairing small wounds, bruises, and infections. This is also the system that tries to destroy strange cells such as those of cancer, including leukemia.
In mastering stress, you have to figure out what you are doing that contributes to your problem/challenge and change it. The four categories of change include: change your behavior, change your thinking, change your lifestyle choices, and/or change the situations you are in. Symptoms of overstressing include fatigue, aches and pains, anxiety, problems sleeping, depression, and lack of joy in your life
Practical Steps to Stress Management and Creating Balance
1.Make your life regular like ‘clockwork.’ Go to bed and get up at the same time each day.
2.Give yourself a break today.
3.Say ‘No’ more often when other people want your time. This includes social engagements, the family dinner on Christmas, Thanksgiving, etc.
4.Postpone making any changes in your living environment if you have been coping with undue stress. Change of any kind is stressful and limiting it until later is a good strategy if you are under a lot of pressure.
5.Reduce the number of hours you spend at work or school. If you are a work-a-holic or school-a-holic you need to reduce the energy drain on your body. TAKE SOME TIME OFF.
6.Nutritional eating habits and eating small meals helps to keep your blood sugar stabilized. Many people reach for something high in sugar content when feeling stressed which compounds the problem. Eat more vegetables.
7.Rest your mind, as mind activities alleviate stress. These mind activities include reading, working on a craft, listening to music, playing a musical instrument, meditation, self-relaxation, dancing, and biofeedback.
8.Have a worrying time if you must worry. When you find yourself worrying over a problem, set aside a time (I suggest to my students 7:30 pm on Tuesday) and then put off worrying until that time. Chances are you will not even remember what you were stressing yourself about.
9.Book time for yourself. In your daily or weekly schedule book time first for yourself and then the other activities you are involved in. Don’t let anything, except an emergency, usurp your commitment to yourself.
10.Have a massage or another form of self-care activity.
5 Great Tips to Handle Stress
Stress has always been a part of our lives. In this hectic time, people lead an increasingly stressful life. Experts state that a little stress can be good; it keeps you sharp and ready to move forward and is sometimes vital for achieving optimum performance.
However, medical research has determined that prolonged stress is very bad for the body, and can block the body’s natural ability to repair, regenerate, and protect itself. Over 90% of disease is caused by stress. Stress is both a physical and psychological response. It can lead to chronic disease, obesity, insomnia, deteriorating relationships, depression, and more.
Stress is such a powerful and harmful force that you must learn effective stress management techniques to live a successful, happy, and healthy life. We must remember that we will always come across inevitable factors that cause pressure and anxiety on us.
What we do not know is that it is not really the problems that are difficult to deal with, but our attitude towards them. So basically, the cause of stress is your attitude toward these things. What, then, is an effective way to deal with stressors?
1. Identify what makes you stressed and uneasy.
Making a list of your stressful experiences is useful. Immediately deal with the issues that you can change, for instance waking up earlier for work in the morning, not leaving things till the last minute, and delegating tasks in case you are taking responsibility for everything.
Forget about the issues that you cannot influence like being stuck in a traffic jam or not getting into the elevator because there is no room for you.
2. Calm down.
A few minute’s breaks would do you good. Wash your face, breath slowly and deeply, and notice if there is tension in any part of your body and release it. You can also listen to relaxing music, or call a friend. Releasing your inner feelings to a friend is a healthy option.
3. It will pass and it will be over before you know it.
Remind yourself that the stressful event will end sooner or later can make you see the positive sides of things. At the same time, calm down your emotions and think of what is the best thing to do rather than take your energy away from what needs to be done.
4. Know yourself. Ask yourself.
What triggers your anxiety? If for example, it is your job, then maybe it’s time for you to reconsider whether it would be best to find a less stressful job. You can also make your job more tolerable by allowing yourself to get that needed vacation or leave.
5. Learn to use your relaxation response.
Just as we all have within us the stress response, we also have an opposite response, which is the relaxation response. A person should elicit that regularly. The relaxation response involves two steps. Repetition, repetition can be a word, a sound, an expression, or a repetitive movement.
The second step is to ignore other thoughts that come to your mind while you’re doing the repetition and come back to the repetition. The technique should be used once or twice a day for about 15 minutes. Sit quietly and choose a suitable repetition, like a prayer, the sound Om, or the word love, or calm. Or you can do a repetitive exercise, for instance, yoga, jogging, Reiki.
Additional repetitive activities are knitting or handicraft. When you incorporate this into your everyday life, you become calmer and better able to handle the stressors. Practice makes perfect and the more you practice relax your mind, the easier it gets.
The true causes of stress are not the problems or negative experiences that you encounter in your life, but your attitude toward them. So, the trick is to change your attitude and to develop a relaxed state, because you cannot be stressed and relaxed at the same time. It is important to understand that what we focus on, we energize.
The more you continue to think about the factors that cause your stress, the more energy you give it. So it is vital to let go and focus on relaxation instead. Consequently, you’re less likely to be upset by a stressor, and thus less likely to have its harmful effect occur. Eventually, it is your choice.
You could either continue to react in the same stressful way, or you could choose to improve your life by changing your attitude and becoming relaxed. There’s no other way around it.
Stress Management Therapy: Key To Better Life
When a person is a little stressed, his body reacts and responds in situations instinctively and efficiently. But this can only be true to a small dose of stress. When the dose arises, stress becomes unhealthy. It inhibits the person to perform well. With little stress, the body is pushed to work hard. This is positive. While when the body is overstressed, the response is negative.
A person who is stressed out can performs normally. His body reacts differently in situations. Stress can even lead to body disorders and illnesses. Because the normal functioning of the body is affected, the person isn’t able to use his instincts when facing a situation. He becomes less creative and less efficient.
Stress can make your life miserable so before it gets worse, you must battle it. The best way to combat stress is through the use of stress management therapy. What is Stress Management Therapy? This refers to the various strategies used by stress specialists and doctors to help people who are stressed out. The goal of stress management therapy is to help a person live life healthfully and stress-free.
Why do you need to combat stress? Stress affects the whole personality of a person. It affects a person’s mental ability and sound judgment. It puts his social, emotional, spiritual, and physical life in jeopardy. Worst, it can lead to serious health problems like phobias, heart problems, and high blood pressure.
Stress management therapy makes sure that you don’t get these negative effects of stress. Generally, stress management therapy involves relaxation, counseling, exercises, yoga, meditation, and time management therapies. The key to combat stress is to manage it. If you can balance your needs and your abilities, there will be less room for stress.
Identification Of Stress
Before you can even start managing stress, you should first identify the factors that trigger stress. Stress management therapy will be based on your stress factor. The therapy will be designed according to your own needs.
Once the stress triggering factors are identified, measures will be taken to help the individual in facing the same circumstances. Stress management therapy may eliminate the factor that causes stress or if not, reduce it to a more tolerable level.
Stress management therapy is vital especially today where everywhere there seems to be tough competition. This makes us want to get the best and thus, we become stressed. Through stress management therapy, you will be able to enjoy life in a stress-free way!
Create a good day & calm down!