Stress is a normal part of life but if you find that the smallest things can send you into a panic or if you feel stressed out every day of the week then you need to seek change. Lori Keong, writing in Marie Claire, identifies six warning signs to watch out for.
- You can’t focus: Being stressed out makes you distracted; being distracted makes you underperform; underperforming makes you stressed. Breaking the cycle is crucial.
- You let work take over from life and family: It’s important to get a work-life balance. If you make yourself miserable then you’re going to burn out.
- You can’t sleep: Endless worrying can make it harder to get a good night’s sleep. And if you don’t get enough good sleep then your attention, and your health, will suffer.
- You have irregular eating patterns: If you’re excessively stressed out, you may seek compensation in other areas – for women, this is often reported as under or overeating.
- You become irritable: Alternatively, you may externalize your frustration by becoming irritable or angry and hence either deliberately or inadvertently distance yourself from others.
- You feel tense: Stress can have real physical symptoms – such as clenching your jaw or suffering from stomach aches. These should be urgent warning signs that you need change fast.
There are simple steps that you can take to defuse stress, however.
- Cardio: Whether jogging, taking a yoga class or just going for a walk, exercise is proven to relieve stress.
- Structure: Get a routine and stick to it, whether it’s in regards to your diet, your day or your working hours. This is a sure way to dispel bad habits of fast and famine.
- Maintain your relationships: Your friends and family keep you sane and connected. Don’t ditch them so you can spend more time with your workload.
- Switch off sometimes: Don’t always be working – have things that you can enjoy and distract yourself with, whether its a hobby or simply watching some TV.
- Train your brain: Be aware of your thoughts and keep in mind whether you’re getting excessively focused on negatives.