For many of us, stress is a constant companion. It’s something that’s always there lurking in the background. When we’re enjoying ourselves or just about to fall asleep, bam, there it is. It often starts off as something small but over the years it gains momentum. And all of a sudden, it’s a big part of our life
Stress is hard to define because it’s different for everyone. We talk about ‘healthy stress’ when it’s just enough to push to meet a deadline or conquer a tricky project. Sometimes it comes at specific times, such as Christmas or during specific work events. For some of us, it’s there pretty much all the time and limits our life and happiness in many ways.
If left unchecked, not only does stress ruin your happiness, but it can lead to serious health issues. Significant stress is associated with obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease and even cancer. If you feel your stress is severe, then seek medical help. A trained counselor will work with to identify the root cause and help you to tackle it. Also, there are several things you can try yourself to ease your stress and live a more peaceful life.
Find Your Triggers
It’s useful to identify exactly what is triggering your stress. If you feel stressed a lot of the time, it can be tricky to work this out. Start by noticing how you feel. How does stress present to you? This is likely to be slightly different for everyone but could include:
OK, I Know My Triggers, What’s Next?
Once you have identified your triggers, what do you do next? The first step is to work out whether you can remove yourself from any of those situations. For example, if it’s a friend who is causing these feelings, could you confront them or stop seeing them? If there’s a way to limit your exposure to stress, then this may be an option. The reality is, though, that it’s just not possible to remove yourself from every stressful situation. So you need to find ways to cope with those situations.
Let’s say, a significant amount of stress is caused by work. Towards the end of each month, your department must submit detailed reports in addition to the usual workload. Just the thought of it makes you feel sick with anxiety. So, what do you do? If you can’t change the situation at present, you need to find ways of making it more bearable. If you have to work late at this time, make sure you’re well-rested before that busy period approaches. Eat well and drink enough water. Surround yourself with things that bring you comfort. This could be family pics, trinkets, incense, etc. Some people find that having a crystal like an orgonite pyramid helps them. They are associated with tranquility and healing.
Plan frequent breaks during busy periods and schedule activities that you enjoy doing. Don’t make it all about work. Try meditating or going for walks to clear your head.
This may not get to the root of the problem, and that will need to be dealt with. But, it will arm you with strategies to manage stressful situations. In the short-term, it will help you cope and feel calmer and more peaceful.
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