Stress is a part of modern living. It is unavoidable. It is part and parcel of everyday life as we deal with challenges posed by work, family commitments, financial obligations, and social relationships. While a small to moderate amount of stress may stimulate us to perform better, excessive stress or stress which endures over a prolonged period of time can damage our health.
Stress Can Have Many Effects on Your Body and Behaviour
Stress symptoms may be affecting your health, even though you might not realize it. You may think illness is to blame for that irritating headache, your frequent insomnia or your decreased productivity at work. Do you know that stress may be the main cause of your illness? Stress symptoms can affect your body, your thoughts and feelings, and your behaviours. But, because people handle stress differently, symptoms of stress can vary. Being able to recognize common stress symptoms can help you manage them. Stress that’s left unchecked can contribute to many health problems, such as high blood pressure, heart disease, obesity and diabetes.
Emotional symptoms of stress include:
- Becoming easily agitated, frustrated, and moody
- Feeling overwhelmed, like you are losing control or need to take control
- Having difficulty relaxing and quieting your mind
- Feeling bad about yourself (low self-esteem), lonely, worthless, and depressed
- Avoiding others
Physical symptoms of stress include:
- Low energy
- Upset stomach, including diarrhoea, constipation, and nausea
- Aches, pains, and tense muscles
- Chest pain and rapid heartbeat
- Frequent colds and infections
- Nervousness and shaking, ringing in the ear, cold or sweaty hands and feet
- Dry mouth and difficulty swallowing
- Clenched jaw and grinding teeth
Cognitive symptoms of stress include:
- Constant worrying
- Racing thoughts
- Forgetfulness and disorganization
- Inability to focus
- Poor judgment
- Being pessimistic or seeing only the negative side
Are you having any symptoms that was mentioned above?
The most dangerous aspect of stress is how easily it can creep up on you. You think that you got used to it. It may start to feel familiar, or even normal. You may not notice how much it is affecting you, even as it exacts a heavy toll.
If you often feel frazzled and overwhelmed, it is time to take action to bring your emotional and physical health back on track.
Eliminate Your Stress For A Better and Healthier You
Here are the 10 tips that can boost your mental wellness for a healthier you.
- Get at least eight hours of sleep a day
You are more alert and less prone to stress after a good night’s rest. Getting enough sleep can improve your memory, your mood and your productivity at work or in life.
- Eat a healthy diet. Foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids, such as salmon, tuna and mackerel, cut the risk of dementia and mental decline
Good nutrition is a natural defence against stress. Begin your day with a nutritious breakfast, preferably of wholegrain cereals and fruits, and take balanced meals throughout the day.
- Keep yourself active. At least 30 minutes of exercise, three times a week, is ideal
Exercising keeps you physically strong, and reduces or prevents stress. Go for a walk or unwind with yoga. It is better to do moderate exercise regularly than to have a heavy workout occasionally.
- Interact with others. Talk to another person for at least 10 minutes daily
Talking to people stimulates the brain. A study in the US found that talking to another person for just 10 minutes a day improves memory scores. Also, the more you interact with others, the faster your brain will work.
- Pick up a new skill or hobby
Learning to play a musical instrument, acquiring computer skills, starting a new hobby or learning to cook a new dish can help keep your brain active and healthy.
- Get a mental workout. Scrabble or mahjong anyone?
Engaging in mind-boggling games involves a combination of memory, decision-making and strategising, which keeps the brain active and prevents dementia. In addition, playing in a group will boost interaction.
- Do something for others. This is the best remedy when you’re feeling down
Helping a friend or family member, or doing community work helps you to take the focus away from yourself. In turn, you will feel more positive and less helpless.
- Learn to manage stress. Shift your mindset and make a list
Make a list of goals and check them off when they are completed. This will help you tackle things one at a time. Seeing problems as opportunities or focusing on the positive can also help to reduce stress. Stress cannot be avoided, but you can learn to manage stress.
- Avoid alcohol, cigarettes and drugs. They are not the solutions to problems
If you have emotional problems, seek support from family and friends, or get professional help. Alcohol, cigarettes and drugs provide only temporary relief from stress and unhappiness.
- Laughter is the best medicine.
Laugh yourself silly and have fun whenever you can. Laughing can help to keep the doctor away because humour activates the brain’s reward and pleasure centres, generating emotions and relaxing the mind.
Help Is Available for Stress
Whether you have or have not completed your personal or work goals, give yourself a pat on your back for doing a good job! Before you start to plan for your next life or work goals, do not forget to make sure that you are in the most healthy and positive mind to kickstart the planning. You are not alone, seek help now!