Does it seem like everyone is stressed out these days? In truth, most people experience some level of stress which is a necessary element of life: it’s the level and impact that we need to be mindful of. There is such a thing as healthy stress – to get you through a work project or exam, or improve your performance in competition. As the mind interprets a challenge, it releases stress hormones into the body in order to increase performance to meet the demand. On occasions it triggers a ‘fight or flight’ stress response, an extra boost of adrenaline to get you through. In a healthy scenario it passes when the event is over.
Problems can arise when ongoing stress can put your physical and emotional health at risk. The human body isn’t very good at distinguishing between perceived threats and real physical threats. You can get just as stressed out over an argument with a friend as a life-or-death situation. It is also subjective – an event that may be extremely stressful for one person can be a minor blip in another person’s life.
Some common stress-inducing experiences include:
Due to the direct impact on your mental and physical health, it is really important to manage your stress levels. Left unattended, panic attacks and prolonged duration stress disorder (PDSD) can develop. Mindfulness, meditation, rest, self-care and healthy lifestyle choices contribute towards stress reduction and are worth incorporating into your life.
If your stress levels have become very challenging, it might be time to seek help from a professional who can unpack your worries and provide coping strategies for the issues at hand and for the longer term.
Psychotherapists are trained to help people navigate Stress.You can search the IAHIP Psychotherapist Directory for this particular issue or any of the issues that may have developed from these changes.
On the Directory page, simply type the issue into the ‘Areas of Interest’ Box:
For more information on Stress, you can access articles from our professional journal - Inside Out. Go to the top left of this website page and enter ‘Stress’ into the search box.