Our life is full of demands, frustrations and deadlines. Many people are feeling stressed nonstop, it becomes their way of life. We have problems at work, home, in relationships, with our children etc.
Stress in itself is not bad. This is just normal reaction of our body telling us that something is not okay and we have to do something about it, we must answer to this message. When we don’t do anything instead worrying, and complaining then it will overwhelm our body and it can damage quality of life, mood, relationships and health. In this article we will show you all causes and symptoms of stress and present you a way to peaceful and laid life. As you will start obey your body then it will immediately change your perception of the world.
What is stress?
As we said stress is one of many reactions of your body informing you about something very important. When you feel angry and threatened, your nervous system is putting you in state of emergency to solve the occurred problem. You are more aware, the heart pounds faster and blood pressure rises. In this state you are stronger, more endurance and focused.
Now you see that stress is not as bad as you think. It is a reaction created in process of evolution to help you survive. Our body adapts slower than our civilization is growing and we just have to learn reading and using this powerful weapon in new proper way. In otherwise it will destroy us.
3 Types of stress
Acute stress- Short term, useful, less harmful
This is the most popular form of stress and it is the least harmful. It occurs for ex. when something important for you will happens in near future, it can be an interview, driving test, date etc.
It takes the shortest time of all and it is characterized by very big intense. This is the most helpfulness type of stress in our times because it gives us power to focus on our short-term goals.
- Stimulation, excitation, feeling more aware, more energy
- Increased blood pressure
- A sense of “not being real”
- Deficiencies in emotional reactions
- Tense stomach
Emotional complications- combination of 3 basic stress emotions – depression, anger and irritability. In this mental state you can experience complications in relations with others. The reason for this is anxiety and altered state of consciousness not showing your true nature.
Physical tension – back pain, muscle tension, headache, jaw pain
Digestive system disorder – irritable bowel syndrome, heartburn, acid stomach, diarrhea etc.
Everything is okay when it comes to your life from time to time but too much is exhausting and it may lead to serious chronic psychological problems, headaches etc.
How to relieve acute stress
This type is not as nagging as other but it can be cause of problems with sleep, short-term obstacle in relations etc. The best way to reduce this stress level is get rid of unnecessary energy surplus and relax. It can be done through: sport (running, cycling, box, walk etc.) and watching tv, reading a book (something which will change your focus).
If you stress is justified and you did not do something important in your opinion, then better use stress energy in proper way: doing which is necessary.
Episodic acute stress – Long-term, cause of serious diseases, destructive
This is popular stress type in peoples life who literally live in chaos, have to much duties. They are always in rush and always late. If somewhere is something that can go wrong then it happen to them . People like this don’t have time for relax and spending time on hobby, with friends, family. Excess of duties don’t allow them for it. They want to be productive and it look like they are but after some time their body starts sending strong signals that it can not function in this way anymore and then human starts suffering, being weaker and more susceptible to disease.
Acute stress for a longer period of time can be fatal. With continuous tension, body have to collapse some day. This type of stress is created to help us in extraordinary cases not all life.
There are two types and this is important when recognizing particular stress type:
Type A: A person is always in rush, is angry, have sense of time urgency, impatience, experience chronic insecurity. People from category A very often are having problems with coronary heat disease in contrast to Type B which is Characterized by the opposite type of behavior.
Type B: “Always worried” – No matter what will happen, type B will always have problem with that. Person B sees conspiracy and catastrophe everywhere. The life is dangerous no matter what is happening right now.
Main symptoms of episodic acute stress are: strong, frequent headaches; hypertension; migraines; pain in chest and heart disease. Psychical side effects of episodic acute stress are important too: Inability to calm down and focus, insomnia, relationship problems.
How to relieve episodic acute stress
Episodic acute stress is hard to overcome. After some period of time all stress behavior become connected with our life which releases negative emotions and thoughts. In hard cases it requires professional help for a few months.
If this is a beginning of episodic acute stress then you can try those methods described below.
Chronic stress – Constant; VERY dangerous; horrible; hope, courage and creativity killer
Chronic stress is the most dangerous and destroying type of stress. It can literally damage organism and mind. This type of stress is always with us. Day after day, month after month, year after year. It is constant type.
It unleashing cataclysm through long-term attrition. It’s the stress of poor people, of pathological families, of being cornered in an unhappy marriage or in a hated job or career. This is type of stress that brings to life never ending misfortune and destroys everything around.
It comes to people who don’t see any escape from bad situation. It deprives people of hope, takes their courage to act.
The worst thing is that you can get use to chronic stress. Episodic stress is something unusual, it does not happen everyday so is easy to notice. People who live with chronic stress very often just forget about that and live with it. They started to feel comfortable with it because something well known is better for them than something new. But don’t think about it as a way to get rid of the problem.
The biggest problem here is that the symptoms must be noticed by somebody from the nearest environment. Another obstacle is to convince the patient to treatment.
Chronic stress is the reason of: suicide (patient don’t have any hope, purpose in life, energy etc.), violence, heart attack, self-inflicted, pathological behavior, antisocial personality disorder, social isolation.
How to relieve chronic stress
After some time chronic stress becomes part of a patient’s personality. The treatment is very complicated and requires the supervision of specialist. Task of the psychologist is to help patient with finding and changing behavior made by chronic stress. Sufferer have to learn how to relax, react in proper way and how to manage stress, it requires from him a lot focus and effort.
Treated person need to eliminate stressing environment, change diet to more healthy, find relaxing hobby and use relaxation techniques.
How NOT to deal with stress
Unfortunately people very often flee from thinking about stress and do not seek for solutions. The worst way to deal with stress is bad habits like a: procrastination, drinking too much, using drugs to relax, smoking, sleeping too much, eating for pleasure etc.
This is bad way to manage stress. Forgetting about problems does not solve it.
Sources of stress in life
Everyone has different stress reasons in life but the biggest impact are those related to work (as our main source of income) and our closest environment. We listed main stress triggers below:
Summing, the main stress at work is because of:
Poorly paid work,
Working too long,
Unclear expectations of your work,
Working under dangerous conditions,
Too demanding job,
Being risk of insecure,
Facing discrimination at work,
If your job meets most of description presented above, then start looking for a new. In other way your psychological health will some day collapse! Sometimes is better to work a lower pay but on healthy conditions than being surrounded with idiots and boss who thinks you’re his property. Think about it.
The death of a loved one, Job loss,
Problems with emotions like depression, anger,
Problems with relations,
Living in a danger neighborhood, some people living in adverse conditions, suffer from stress due to their environment,
Traumatic experience like a rape, robbery or violence against somebody close to you.
Isolation and loneliness. People are social beings. A sense of exclusion, lack of belonging to community and understanding is becoming a more frequent cause of stress in today’s world. This is especially noticeable in large cities, where come young, single people who due to intensive work do not have the time to make a new friendships, allowing them to create a new grid of close friends or meet a soul mate. In today’s society, where everyone can rely only on themselves, loneliness are becoming increasingly serious stress problem.
But often stress comes from inside rather than outside. Sometimes we worry about something so much that we can stop thinking about it. It causes anger, uncertainty, fear and tension, our body senses danger and stress occurs even in the most unexpected time. It happens to many people.
Self-help guide in early stages of stress
The most popular stress reducing techniques
Each of us feels stress for other reasons, and respond otherwise to stress therefore, there is no universal method to deal with stress, which would be effective for all. Below are the most popular techniques to reduce excessive stress:
- Exercises. Regular physical activity is one of the most effective methods of overcoming stress. The exercises helps our strained muscles relax. It draws oxygen to the body. Workout improves the general well-being and allow you to get a distance to everyday problems.
- Mental techniques. Mental methods rely on deliberate retreat. Mental techniques include such methods as hypnosis, meditation or visualization techniques.
- Hobby. Studies has shown that people who dedicate free time to a hobby decidedly less frequently suffer from stress-related problems. Indulging to a favorite activities and forgetting momentarily about the problems we give our bodies time to regenerate before returning to the battlefield.
- Conversation. It’s probably the simplest method of combating stress. Some people just have to tell someone about their worries and they immediately feel better. If you don’t want to talk about your problems then you can try to write them on piece of paper. This method is recommended by some psychologists, our worries transferred on paper can be easier to control, so the stress level greatly decreases.
- Mastering time management techniques. A huge number of people is subject to stress due to tight deadlines and lack of time. Try to find a time management technique adapted to your needs. It will help you to make decisions regarding to what you should do at the particular moment.
- Maintaining balance and distance in life. This advice is probably the hardest to implement but its worth a try. In this method is very important to keep balance between private life and time your yourself and relax. No one is a machine which can work all the time. We are complex organisms who need contact with other, new challenges and a time when we can just sit alone and forget about everything around. This balance is very important and it should be on top of your priorities in life.
- Healthy life. People who take care about rest and healthy lifestyle are able to control stress much easier than people who don’t care about themselves. Smoking, drinking and eating too much weakens your strength and health. It is much harder then to look at problems as challenges. One of the easiest ways to reduce your stress level is decent enough sleep.