Coping with stress
Some levels of stress are healthy and normal in life and can help to challenge us or allow us to come out of our comfort zone.
However, extreme long-term stress is related to feeling under too much pressure, emotionally or mentally, which can impact your health.
There are many things that can cause stress including; work, relationships, health, studying, moving home, family and money problems. Short-term stress associated with these things can be normal.
However, long-term stress could lead to other mental and emotional issues such as anxiety, high blood pressure, depression, heart disease, stroke, headaches, loss of appetite and loss of concentration. Stress is not an illness but if long-term stress is not managed, it could be extremely unhealthy.
There are also certain situations or events that can trigger stress, particularly when we have lots to do, thinking too much and not having control over these situations.
An extreme amount of stress could also lead to you feeling irritable, affect your sleep or having low self-esteem.
Ways to avoid stress:
- Avoid working long hours without having breaks. Having a regular break enables you to recharge yourself.
- Talk to a counsellor to help you if you're feeling too stressed and feel that you are unable to cope.
- Avoid over worrying by writing down the main things that are causing you to worry.
- Take simple steps to feel less stressed, such as breathing techniques and being more physically active. Exercise helps to release endorphins, which can help you sleep better and lower your stress levels.
- It's important to ensure that you get a restful sleep every night to recharge yourself.
- Engage in your hobbies and interests.
- Avoid taking on too much responsibility from others, learn to say no if you feel overwhelmed and unable to cope. Know your limits, whether in your personal or professional life.
- Create a to do list and prioritise your work or responsibilities by an order of priority.
- It's important to figure out where the stress is coming from, as doing so will enable you to take the appropriate action.
- Begin to manage your time well, so you create time to rest and unwind.
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About Kate Megase
I am a counsellor, coach and motivational speaker. I specialise in issues associated with relationships, anxiety, depression and low self-esteem.