Stress! This 6 letter word can cause havic on our lives. It can get our hinnies in gear. It can break us down. This post containes many things you need to know about stress.
This year join me in a year long mental health and stress series. This month I’m going to share with you what you need to know about stress.
What is Stress?
Before we can talk about how stress affects us, we need to know what stress is. WedMD is a super helpful resource. They said:
Stress is the body’s reaction to harmful situations — whether they’re real or perceived. When you feel threatened, a chemical reaction occurs in your body that allows you to act in a way to prevent injury. This reaction is known as “fight-or-flight,” or the stress response. During stress response, your heart rate increases, breathing quickens, muscles tighten, and blood pressure rises.WedMD
Everyone Gets Stressed
Throughout our lives we will all experience stress. Some stress is a one time thing or it can happen over and over again. Some people are able to shake it off and keep going. Others are not able to recover as quickly.
What causes stress in you will be different than me. Even though everyone experiences stress it will not be the same triggers for everyone.
Stress Affects Us Mentally and Physically
The affects of stress can have many risks to us mentally and physically. Everyone is different and will have different affects. Some will experience emtional symptons, others physical, or cognitive, and still others behavioral symptons.
Some of the symptons can be the same as sickness. So it’s important to keep track and talk with your doctor.
Sometimes Stress Is Not Bad – Say What?
That’s right, sometimes stress is not bad. “Healthy” stress can motivate us. How very helpful of you stress… 🙂 Stress can help push us to get things done or to stop procrstinating. For me that’s a win.
Other times stress can trigger a fight or flight in a dangerous situation. In these moments stress is very helpful in keeping us safe or triggering to us that something is not right. This type of stress I want to have, you?
Other Times Stress is Bad
This seems better… haha! When I think about stress I normally think about the negative aspects related to stress. Again, this will be different for everyone.
But what you need to know is that stress can be harmful to our bodies – mentally and physically. Short term stress is not as scary as long term stress.
Coping with the impact of chronic stress can be challenging. Because the source of long-term stress is more constant than acute stress, the body never receives a clear signal to return to normal functioning. With chronic stress, those same lifesaving reactions in the body can disturb the immune, digestive, cardiovascular, sleep, and reproductive systems. Some people may experience mainly digestive symptoms, while others may have headaches, sleeplessness, sadness, anger, or irritability. Over time, continued strain on your body from stress may contribute to serious health problems, such as heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, and other illnesses, including mental disorders such as depression or anxiety.National Institute of Mental Health
See what I mean about long term stress being scary?
Help is Always There
One thing I have learned from the last few years of really working on my mental health is that help is out there. I went to a therapist for 4 years. I know she is only a text away to get an appointment when I feel I need it.
Family members and friends have also been a great resource and help for me. The thing you need to remember is to ASK for help! Most people may not know you are really stressed and having a hard time.
This is when you need to reach out for help. I bet they will be willing to bend over backwards to help you when they know you are struggling.
Managing Stress is Possible
Stop rolling your eyes at me. Haha! I promise there are so many ways you can help to manage your stress. I also promise it won’t work 100% of the time. Being honest is what I’m about.
Don’t get discouraged! It will be hard work, but I promise it will be worth it. The next few months I will focus my mental health series on ways to help manage stress.
Manage is a great word. 🙂 Solving stress may not be possible for you, like it is for me. But we can learn to manage it throughout our life. For that reason I will always be a work in progress.
I will not give up! I hope you join me in learning more about managing stress and your mental health. Please don’t give up on yourself! You are worth every second of moment of thought, love, and self help. I promise!
If you want to get a head start and not wait for next month, here is a great resource. 🙂 Sign up for my free 5 day Self Help email course. Free and always will be.