Are you nervous, anxious, irritable or moody? Do you feel depressed or sad and often become frustrated over little things? Are you forgetful due to the fact that you have trouble keeping things straight and thinking clearly? If the answer to these entire questions is yes, then you are in a state of tension or pressure, which is stress. Everyone experiences stress at times – adults, teenagers, and even children. In consequence of this, you should all learn more about stress, its causes, its symptoms, its effects on our body or related disorders, and how we can minimize it in your life.
In medicine, stress is a physical, chemical, or emotional development that causes strains that can lead to physical illness. In psychology, the term stress is used to refer both to heightened mental and body states and to the cause of such states. In, general, we can say that stress is your body’s response to anything that you perceive as overwhelming, may it be positive or negative. Stress is a natural part of life, without it, you would lose your energy for living. Too much or too little of it will limit your effectiveness, so it is important to find your optimal level of stress – the balance at which you are most motivated. Excessive stress hinders your relationships at home, in school, and even at work. It also reduces your liveliness and energy resources that could be used for enjoyment.
Aside from this, you can also become negatively influenced in your attitudes and feelings about yourself. In addition, medical research estimates that as much as ninety percent of illnesses, disorders, and diseases are stress-related. According to the United States Center for Disease Control in Atlanta, Georgia, “Eighty-three percent of deaths for adults between the age of twenty-one and sixty-five are related to lifestyle.” Stress may lead to hazardous health, so it is vital to know its causes to minimize it and control its optimal level.
Everyone differs in what is stressful or what is not. What one person may perceive to be a devastating event may be a minor setback for another. Some of the more common causes of stress are poor nutrition, bad sleeping habits, fear of failure, financial problems, personal loss, family changes, and deficient relationships. Most people do not eat healthy food, which causes their nutritional habit, immune system, and energy levels to deplete. Bad sleeping habit also causes stress because the human body needs an average of eight to ten hours of sleep each day to function properly. Fear of failure is also common because everyone wants to please his or herself, as well as others, and with the effort of trying to do so comes stress.
As for finances, all of us deal with financial issues everyday-car payments, student loans, bills, going out on a date, etc. The death of a loved one, loss of friends, and separation from a significant other can also lead to high levels of stress when not dealt with properly. Aside from the bad stressors, which are stated above, there are also good stressors, which are the ones that make us fell happy and excited, and challenged positively. Examples of this are joining the varsity team, running for student council, entering a contest, or winning a competition.
People who experience stress may constantly feel pressured, harasses, and hurried. Too much stress can have a negative effect on one’s body, mind, and feelings so it is important to recognize the early signs of stress in order to do something about it. Some of the physical symptoms of stress are headaches, nervousness, rashes, stomachaches, fast heartbeat, perspiration, and increased urination. Some signs of mental stress include lack of concentration, forgetfulness, drop in school performance, and carelessness. Boredom, anger outburst, nightmares, depression, withdrawal syndrome, and anxiety attacks are the common emotional signs of stress. If you have signs of stress very often, it is better to do something about it so you can improve your quality of life.
Prolonged and unwanted stress can have undesirable effects on mental and physical health; although reactions may differ form each individual. A number of stress-related disorders that are known are heart disease, depression, and high blood pressure or hypertension, which can damage the kidneys and can lead to stroke. Respiratory disorders can also be affected by stress. Most common of theses is asthma, which may cause emotional upsets. In addition, emotional stress can also aggravate skin disorders that produce itching, tickling, and rashes. Post-traumatic disorder is also a serious illness brought about by major traumatic events. Its symptoms include nervous irritability, difficulty in relating to surroundings, and depression.
It is evident that stress is really a part of our life. It’s inevitable that we encounter stress in our day to day living. Due to this fact, it is important for us to know how to cope up and how to minimize it. We can do this by exercising and eating nutritional food regularly. Also, we should avoid excess caffeine intake, illegal drugs, alcohol, and tobacco, which can increase feelings of anxiety and agitation. Aside from this, it is important to learn to feel good about doing a competent or “good enough” job rather than demanding perfection from yourself and others. Taking a break from stressful situations can also be useful.
Activities like listening to music, talking to a friend, drawing, writing, or spending time with a pet can reduce stress. We should also learn to decrease negative self talk. Challenge negative thoughts about yourself with alternative neutral or positive thoughts. “My life will never get better” can be transformed into “I may feel hopeless now, but my life will probably get better if I work at it and get some help.”
Stress can either make us or break us; it just depends on how we deal with it. It is important for us to recognize the early symptoms of stress so that we may be able to work on it to lead a better quality of life. With determination and proper execution, we can use stress as a positive thing for us, rather than letting it be a hindrance to our goals and dreams in life.