So what is stress?
According to the Health and Safety Executive half a million people in the UK experience work-related stress at a level they believe is making them ill, while 12.8 million working days were lost last year due to stress, depression and anxiety. Stress also affects family life, relationships and the ability to enjoy our normal routines and interests.
Stress can often go unnoticed for a long time before something happens which results in a major breakdown or major physical symptoms such as headaches, nausea, stomach ache, dizziness, fatigue, palpitations, poor concentration, inability to remember things, tendency to worry a lot, low self esteem, sleep disturbances, excessive anger, moodiness and being easily upset.
So what is stress??
Stress is the feeling we experience when we lose confidence in our ability to cope with a situation. Due to stress being partly our own perceptions on our situation, people will respond differently in similar situations. Stress may also build up due to many changes occurring in different areas of our life at the same time.
When people feel overwhelmed by their situation or 'stressed' their emotional brain becomes dominant which then prevents the thinking brain from coming up with possible solutions. Stress is part of everyday life and there will be times when we go through particularly stressful periods such as moving house, breakdown in relationships, job insecurity/redundancy, illness, exams, financial difficulties or large demanding work loads.
Late nights, poor diet and excess alcohol or caffeine are additional factors which can result from feeling out of control but which also have an impact on our mental health and inability to function normally. Therefore Christmas not only presents us with additional stressful activities but physically our bodies are also less able to deal with it.
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