Everybody suffers from stress, right?
So how do you know if what you are experiencing is normal, or needs attention?
Stress is an overused word.
Stress is an everyday word that can be overused. If you feel stressed, ask yourself if there is a different word you can use like:
- I am busy
- I drive myself
- I push for success
- I am multi-tasking
- As a mum, it is usual to have lots to do in a day
- As a bread winner, it is common to be concerned about finances
You will find that by substituting other words for the word “stress”, you may feel different. You could feel busy yet on top of things.
Good stress, or EU-STRESS, is described as the stress necessary to succeed. It is not pathological and serves the function of “getting you going”. It also serves the function of giving you the focus and energy to overcome obstacles.
Eu-stress is common around exam times, before your wedding or when moving home.
In other words, stress is a normal human response to pressure and challenges. It can be helpful and functional.
Unhealthy stress needs attention. It can be described as excess strain that puts pressure on your mind, your body and your immune system.
When you feel that everything seems to have become too much:
- you feel overloaded
- wound-up tight
- and wonder whether you can cope with the pressures placed upon you – YOU NEED HELP!
When you feel tired, tense, anxious, burnt out or overwhelmed – YOU NEED HELP!
When you suffer from the following symptoms often:
- Headaches, other aches & pains
- Sleep disturbance, insomnia, fatigue
- Blood pressure rises
- Breathing becomes more rapid
- Digestive system slows down (indigestion, diarrhoea)
- Immune system goes down ie you get colds and flu often
- Feeling angry, moody & irritable
- Heart rate (pulse) rises
- Difficulty concentrating
- Feeling tense & anxious or depressed – YOU NEED HELP!
How to manage stress
Life is full of daily challenges and therefore there is always the potential to suffer from unhealthy stress. Consequently, it is vital that you learn to handle stress in healthy ways.
At Anxiety Solutions CBT we will first evaluate:
- Are you overusing the word stress? If so, we will teach you how to drop it and substitute the word “stress” with different, more helpful words.
- Are you experiencing eu-stress? If so, we will assist you to harness the benefits so that you can achieve your goals.
- Are you suffering from harmful stress? If so, we will help you identify negative thoughts and behaviours and teach you positive, life affirming thoughts and behaviours. We will also teach you stress reducing techniques. Moreover, we will help you identify life changes that may need to be made to minimise stress going forward.
Here are some tips to help you manage your stress. These are available from the Australian Psychological Society (APS). Read them and see if you can apply them to your life.
However, you may discover that:
- it is hard to change
- or you cannot consistently apply these tools
- or you do not really understand how to utilise the tips
- or you are not clear what your specific problem is
- none of the tips resonate with you
If so, YOU NEED HELP!