Isn’t Everyone Stressed?
Yes! And would you believe, stress isn’t always bad! In small doses, it can help you perform under pressure and motivate you to do your best. But when you’re constantly running in emergency mode, your mind and body pay the price. If you frequently find yourself feeling frazzled and overwhelmed, it’s time to take action to bring your nervous system back into balance. You can protect yourself and improve how you think and feel by learning how to recognize the signs and symptoms of chronic stress and taking steps to reduce its harmful effects.
Surprisingly, stress can result from both negative or positive experiences. Common stressful events have been indexed and assigned a numerical value to rank life events, using these values to determine a person’s potential to become ill as a result of stress. Some of the more frequent stressors in life, most of which appear on the stress inventory, include:
- Losing a job
- Change in financial status
- Birth of a child
- Starting/finishing school
- Death of a loved one
- Serious illness
Most of us have or will experience many of these events over the course of our lives; stress will therefore also be a part of our lives. At Thriveworks Blacksburg Stress Counseling, our therapists are able to offer advice on stress reduction techniques that can be used to manage stress when it enters your life.
What Actually IS Stress?
Stress is simply your body’s way of responding to any kind of demand or threat – real or perceived. When you believe danger to be impending, your body’s defenses respond automatically with a process known as the fight-or-flight reaction, or the stress response.It’s your body’s way of protecting you. When it works properly, it helps you stay focused, energetic, and alert. In can even save your life, for example, by giving you extra strength to defend yourself, by alerting you to hit your brakes to avoid an accident etc.
Stress is also what keeps you focused during a presentation at school or work, sharpens your concentration in competitions, or drives you to study for an exam. BUT there’s a point where stress stops being helpful and starts causing major damage to your health, your mood, your productivity, your relationships, and your quality of life.
Symptoms of an Unhealthy Stress Level
Stress can easily it can creep up on you, and that makes it dangerous. You get used to it. It starts to feel normal. You don’t even notice how much it’s affecting you, bit it takes a heavy toll. It’s so important to be aware of the common warning signs and symptoms of stress overload.
- Memory problems
- Inability to concentrate
- Poor judgment
- Seeing only the negative
- Anxious or racing thoughts
- Constant worrying
- Anxiety and Agitation
- Moodiness, irritability, anger
- Feeling overwhelmed
- Loneliness, isolation
- Depression or general unhappiness
The Effects of Stress on Your Physical and Emotional Health
Ongoing and insurmountable stress can become unbearable. Chronic stress can contribute or even cause many mental health and physical health issues. High stress levels have been linked to:
- Insomnia or hypersomnia
- Reduced or increased appetite
- Substance abuse
- Changes in mental health
- Dissatisfaction at work
- Negative impact on relationships
- Anger, depression, anxiety
- Decreased enjoyment in social activities
When these symptoms are the result of stress, they will often resolve once the stressful situation is over. However, if the stress, or your stress symptoms persist, it may be time to consider counseling. Thriveworks Blacksburg Stress Counseling has numerous techniques and approaches to help you manage your stress. Mindfulness, therapeutic lifestyle change, and self-management skills are just a few of the therapies our caring counselors can teach you. Let us help you on your journey to a happier, more fulfilling life.
Call 540-376-3348 to see a therapist as soon as tomorrow, and maybe even today!