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Stress is something that we all experience during our lifetimes. It's a completely natural human response to anything that threatens us or our wellbeing. Originally, stress evolved as a defence mechanism that helps to trigger our fight or flight response when we faced serious danger. However, nowadays, most of us feel stress in response to situations that are not life-threatening, which can result in long term exposure to stress. Experiencing stress regularly - or experiencing "chronic stress" - can have a truly negative impact on our overall health and wellbeing, so it's important that we understand stress and know how to deal with it effectively and healthily. This knowledge can help you to lead an overall happier and healthier lifestyle!
How Stress Can Impact Your Health
Let's start by taking a look at how stress can impact your health. Believe it or not, stress can wreak havoc with your physical wellbeing, your mental wellbeing and your emotional wellbeing. Some common physical consequences of stress include headaches, muscle tension, fatigue, sleep problems and much more. Some mental and emotional consequences of stress include anxiety, irritability, restlessness, sadness, procrastination and a lack of motivation. A combination of these factors can result in behavioural changes too, such as emotional outbursts, withdrawal from social situations, undereating, overeating and more. Of course, you're going to want to avoid all of these potential health consequences. So, what can you do to manage and reduce your experiences of stress?
Managing and Reducing Stress
There are many steps that you can take to manage and reduce your experience of stress daily. What works best for one person may not be the best solution for another, so it's a good idea to try a few different approaches out until you find the one that suits you best. Here are just a few suggestions and recommendations that could help!
Identify the Cause of Your Stress
The first step that you need to take to manage and resolve stress in your life is to identify the cause of your stress. Knowing what's causing your stress will allow you to come up with an action plan of how to deal with it effectively. Causes of stress tend to boil down to demand on you exceeding your capabilities or resources. Common causes of stress tend to include:
Take Positive Action
Once you know the cause of your stress, you can take action to manage or resolve it. If you are stressed due to health concerns, you can seek help from medical professionals to answer any questions or concerns you may have and to receive any treatment you may need. If you are stressed due to financial difficulties, you can start finding ways to reduce your outgoings, resolve debt, generate additional income or otherwise resolve the problem at hand. If you are stressed due to relationship troubles, you can seek counseling or consider parting ways. If you are stressed due to an excessive workload, you can talk to your manager or supervisor to redistribute responsibility and set more realistic and reasonable goals. Whatever your worry is, there's a way to manage or resolve it healthily.
Get Sufficient Sleep
Sleep is essential for good health and wellbeing. Your body needs it to rest, recuperate and get ready for the day ahead. As many of us have experienced, insufficient sleep can lead to stress and a low mood. If you are already experiencing stress, you want to avoid placing further stress on yourself as a result of not sleeping properly. So, aim to get your recommended eight hours each night. If you're struggling to sleep, there are several steps you can take to start catching z's. Try making simple lifestyle changes, such as cutting caffeine out, avoiding using devices with blue light before bed and setting yourself a reasonable bedtime. We'd also recommend trying our Natural Sleep Aid supplements, which are specially formulated for the relief of occasional sleeplessness.
Relax Your Muscles
Often, when we experience stress, we exhibit physical symptoms such as a clenched jaw or tight muscles. If you show these symptoms regularly, you could begin to feel soreness and aches, placing further stress on your body. So, when you experience muscle tension, you should actively try to relax your muscles. Massage is a great option that can come hand in hand with a multitude of health benefits. Not only can it release muscle tension, but it can help to improve circulation and reduce levels of stress hormones too. Sure, professional massage might not be an option during the pandemic, but there are plenty of home massage tools available to try out yourself. You may want to try our Magnesium Glycinate too, which promotes relaxation of the muscles.
Reaching Out for Professional Help
If you feel that you are really struggling with stress, or if you are experiencing high levels of stress or chronic stress without any reasonable or logical cause, you may want to consider reaching out to a health professional like your doctor or a therapist. They may find that your stress is a symptom of a mental health condition. If this is the case, they will be able to officially diagnose your condition and guide you on the right path to alleviate your symptoms and manage your condition. Next steps could involve therapy, medication or a combination of the two approaches. There are also alternative sources of help out there, including support groups and helplines. Remember that you are never alone in your experience of stress or any related conditions you may be experiencing. There are countless sources of help and support available to you.
While stress is an extremely common reaction
to threats or pressure, we mustn't simply accept it and suffer with it. Instead, it's important to resolve all experiences of stress that we can and that we effectively manage those that can't be resolved. Hopefully, some of the information, suggestions and recommendations above will help you to deal with any stress that you may experience!