2 min read

So today is National Stress Awareness Day and this is something we will all suffer in day to day life.

Stress to some extent is good for us as it keeps us going but too much of it and it will get in the way of our lives and even could affect relationships.

Everyone has their own different levels of when they get stressed and some people are better at managing it than others.

This doesn't mean your weaker than everyone else, it just means that your human and we are all different.

Imagine a world if everyone was the same, it would be extremely boring.

There are many ways people can vent their stress and no one way works for everyone.

For me, the way I deal with stress is going to the gym, listening to music, taking 5 mins out.

For others this could be meditation, yoga, walks, having a long bath and loads of other ideas which I will list up later. 

If you're not sure what's causing your stress, keep a diary and make a note of stressful episodes for two-to-four weeks. Then review it to spot the triggers.

Things you might want to write down include:

  • the date, time and place of a stressful episode
  • what you were doing
  • who you were with
  • how you felt emotionally
  • what you were thinking
  • what you started doing
  • how you felt physically
  • a stress rating (0-10 where 10 is the most stressed you could ever feel)

You can use the diary to:

  • work out what triggers your stress
  • work out how you operate under pressure
  • develop better coping mechanisms

Doctors sometimes recommend keeping a stress diary to help them diagnose stress.

Also talking is a good way to deal with stressful situations as the lack of communication could actually be the issue.

So what actually could cause stress:

Big life changes often create stress, even happy events like having a baby or planning a wedding.

Feeling like you aren't in control of events in your life – for example, if you're diagnosed with a serious illness or you get made redundant – can also cause stress.

Stress may be related to:

  • work – for example, unemployment, a high workload or retirement 
  • family – for example, divorce, relationship difficulties or being a carer
  • housing – for example, moving house or problems with neighbours
  • personal issues – for example, coping with a serious illness, bereavement or financial problems

It's important to tackle the causes of stress in your life if you can. Avoiding problems rather than facing them can make things worse.

But it's not always possible to change a stressful situation. You may need to accept there's nothing you can do about it and refocus your energies elsewhere.

For example, if you're a carer, find ways to take breaks and do the things you enjoy.

How to tackle stress:

You can't always prevent stress, but there are lots of things you can do to manage stress better. 

You could:

  • try mindfulness – studies have found mindfulness can help reduce stress and improve your mood
  • use calming breathing exercises
  • download some relaxation and mindfulness apps on to your phone
  • listen to an anxiety control audio guide

Other things that may help:

  • share your problems with family or friends
  • make more time for your interests and hobbies
  • take a break or holiday
  • take some regular exercise and make sure you're eating healthily
  • make sure you're getting enough sleep 

It is good to have stress but when it becomes out of control and affecting every day life then book an appointment with your GP for help.

Created by Steve Killick


***Parts of the content taken from NHS website, click here for more information***

* The email will not be published on the website.