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Stress Is How We React To A Situation

June 12, 2013

What is stress?

What causes stress?

A lot of people believe stress is from their environment, people, pressure, time – it is none of this it is how we react to this.

  • Spilt milk at home and your reactions
  • We have a response called fright or flight – summon all the resources we need to fight something or flee it.
  • When we have this stress response the body changes, heart beats faster, brain function changes, vision narrows while it is lifesaving people are using this response on a daily basis e.g. Waiting in the post office queue

What are some of the signs and symptoms of stress?

  • Cognitive
  • Physical
  • Emotional
  • Behavioural

Cognitive Signs and Symptoms:

  • Memory problems
  • Inability to concentrate
  • Poor judgment
  • Seeing only the negative
  • Anxious or racing thoughts
  • Constant worrying

Physical Signs and Symptoms:

  • Aches and pains
  • Diarrhoea or constipation
  • Nausea, dizziness
  • Chest pain, rapid heartbeat
  • Loss of sex drive
  • Frequent colds

Emotional Signs and Symptoms:

  • Moodiness
  • Irritability or short temper
  • Agitation, inability to relax
  • Feeling overwhelmed
  • Sense of loneliness and isolation
  • Depression or general unhappiness

Behavioural Signs and Symptoms:

  • Eating more or less
  • Sleeping too much or too little
  • Isolating yourself from others
  • Procrastinating or neglecting responsibilities
  • Using alcohol, cigarettes, or drugs to relax
  • Nervous habits (e.g. nail biting, pacing)

One of my guiding principles is that every situation, good or bad, offers a gift that provides some benefit. It’s just a matter of finding the gift. Many people who are overtaken by events are quick to declare them a setback or disaster. Instead you can ask, “Where’s the gift in this?” – John McGrath

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