Stress: warning signs and management

Let’s face it. Stress is in our day-to-day life since many years. We can define stress as the physical and emotional reaction we produce when we need to face a life challenge, change or demand.

Stress can be positive if you keep it under control and if you use it to get your objectives done, to meet a deadline or to improve your performance.

However, when it’s out of our control, it’s maintained along a long period of time, and it’s starting to cause negative impact in your body, mood or behavior. Then, you need to start working on it, since it can make you feel sick.

What are the warning signs and symptoms of stress?

You can identify, that your stress is out of your control if you are suffering:

  • headaches
  • chest pain
  • insomnia or problems with sleeping
  • fatigue
  • stomach aches
  • muscles tension

Or you are noticing a big change in your emotions, and it is making you feel:

  • restlessness
  • lack of motivation, every morning when you wake up, you have a lack of motivation to start your day.
  • unable to focus on what you need to do.
  • overwhelmed
  • anger attacks
  • irritable
  • anxious
  • sad or even depressed

Or if you are changing your behaviors to:

  • Oversleeping and overeating fatty and sweet junk food
  • Over procrastinating with TV series or social media 
  • Avoid facing your tasks because you feel unable to complete them
  • Increasing the use of alcohol, tobacco or drugs
  • Using medication or drugs to relax you
  • Have unexpected anger attacks
  • Cry repeatedly
  • Avoid social situations

When should I get help for my stress?

Do you recognize any of these symptoms in your life right now?

If your answer is yes, do not worry, there are many solutions at your disposal. And trust me, stress is something you can learn to manage.

First thing I will recommend you will be to make an appointment with your doctor so he/she can measure the impact of your stress in your physical health.

In parallel, I would recommend you to start working in your 3 steps stress relief process.

1º Step is to IDENTIFY:

  • What is the most stressful area in your life?
    • Let’s imagine most of your stress comes from your working life.
  • Once your stress area is clear, then think about what are the main stress makers in this particular area?
    • At work my mains stressors are:
      • To deal with the unrealistic deadlines imposed by my boss
      • Discussions with my teammates about how to manage client’s claims
      • You have problems saying NO or setting boundaries
  • How do you talk to yourself? How is your inner voice when all these situations happened?
    • You are your worst critic
      • You talk to yourself in a very rude manner
      • Your inner critic only can point out your mistakes and failures
      • Your inner voice
  • 2º Step is to MANAGE your THOUGHTS, EMOTIONS AND BEHAVIORS:

 Did you know that the thoughts that you have determine how you feel?

And the way you feel determines the way you react and how you will behave.

So all this spiral starts in your thoughts, starts in your mind, if your thoughts against any stressful situation such as a meeting with your boss creates negative thoughts, you are going to feel negative emotions, and you’re going to feel and behave awful.

This mechanism may sound very simple, but implementing it, will help you out to manage your stress. If you are aware of the quality of your thoughts, you will be able to manage your emotions and your level of stress will decrease.

Let’s put an example, you receive an unexpected email from your boss, informing that he/she wants to meet you in 15 minutes.

The beginning of a stressful situation will start with negative thoughts such as: Oh my God, he/she is going to fire me. I’m sure I did something wrong. I am sure my results are not as expected….

How do you think you are going to feel with such negative ideas flying by your mind? Probably you will start feeling worried and afraid, maybe anxious. So imagine, How are you going to behave in such an emotional state?

Now, let’s imagine against the same email you have a very different reaction, let’s imagine you just read it, and just think, okay, my boss is going to meet me in 15 minutes… perfect, and keep on working. With such state of mind, you will be able to prevent your stress and avoid feeling worry or afraid.

Let’s be honest, you don’t know what is this meeting about. So why do you need to worry in advance and make your body and heart suffer for no reasons?

The Greek philosopher Seneca used to said that “we suffer more often in imaginations than in reality”

Does this sound familiar?

Do you recognize yourself in this quote?

  • 3º Step is to COMMUNICATE IN AN ASSERTIVE WAY:

Once we have identified, our main stressors. And we control the way we talk to ourselves, we control our inner voice, and we control our inner critic.  We start identifying the quality for our thoughts and start preventing stressful situations that might only happen in our imagination. We control our thoughts, emotions, and behaviors.

It’s very important to learn how to communicate them. In an assertive way. It’s very important to learn how to say NO in certain situations, in order to try to avoid stress to return to our lives.

It is important to learn how to set boundaries and how to communicate them to the people surrounding us. Furthermore, it is important to let them know in an assertive way that what they do, the way they talk or the way they behave is making us feel stressful or uncomfortable. Once the communication flows in an assertive way, and we are able to express what we feel objectively, our levels of stress will be decreased.

6 Comments

  1. Mark

    Thanks for your blog, nice to read. Do not stop.

    Reply
    • Marta

      Thank you Mark!
      Please do not hesitate to contact me if I can help you cope with all what you are feeling

      Reply
  2. GGDB

    very nice submit, i certainly love this web site, carry on it

    Reply
    • Marta

      Thank you!
      If you need any extra help with your anxiety or your emotions, please don’t hesitate to contact us.
      Regards
      CWC

      Reply
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    Reply
  4. ggdb

    This really answered my problem, thank you!

    Reply

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