The fact is that we all get stressed to some degree or other in our lives. The problem arises when your stress is constant and there doesn’t seem to be any end in sight. This blog was written to help you identify signs of emotional stress and how to manage emotional stress.
In my family, we have been conditioned to believe that these things come in “3’s”. So if two things have happened to cause stress, like life’s curve balls, you are guaranteed the Universe will throw a doozy of a third one at you. This by the way is a negative limiting belief passed down in my family. Anyway, my point is one curve ball is bad enough and you or may not just be getting over this when out of the blue another one is thrown at you. You’re becoming more and more stressed. Initially, you might be coping fairly well. Loved ones, friends, and colleagues may not be aware of what is going on in your life.
Now, imagine a second curve ball is thrown at you. This compounds your stress even more. Imagine a third, fourth, or even more curve balls being thrown at you. YIKES!!! HELLLPPPPPP!!! Everything is being heaped on you all at once.
For some, they are able to manage their emotional stress and get through it. For others, they do not realise the damage that is being done to them mentally, emotionally, and physically. And the negative ripple effect it can have on others around them.
Last week my blog discussed the 8 physical signs of stress to look out for and I also offer solutions on how to manage your stress too.
This week I discuss the emotional signs of stress that you may or may not be aware of.
You see it all depends on how you manage your emotional stress. How much stress there is in your life, and if you are aware that you are experiencing or exhibiting the signs of stress.
Are you showing any of these signs of emotional stress?
- Irritable or angry, snapping and quite possibly biting the head of people when you aren’t even aware you are doing this.
- Can’t sleep, tossing and turning, not enough sleep, or too much sleep ( not even wanting to get up out of bed, shower and dress).
- Poor memory or concentration. Walking into a room to get something and not recalling what you wanted?
- Felling down in yourself.
- Lack of or no motivation.
- Low or no focus and attention.
- Constantly worrying.
- Intrusive thoughts and your mind just won’t switch off.
- Feeling overwhelmed.
- Avoidance – family, friends, situations, events, life.
- Crying episodes – tears flow out of the blue or yours balling for hours on end.
- Poor self-care.
Ok, I have at least one sign from the above list, what I can do to manage emotional stress?
First and foremost you are so important. You matter. There is only one of you in this life, you are a gift to this world and to everyone else in it.
So let’s start by ;
Prioritising yourself and start to put your needs first.
If you have to, schedule time in your diary and mark off a couple of hours just for you, go do it. Taking a break away from things will definitely help you manage emotional stress.
When have you ever canceled on someone like the hairdresser, the cleaner, a friend, work or ferrying the kids or putting the bins out for collection? Now is not the time to cancel on yourself! When we mark time off for ourselves we are more than likely going to do it.
- take this time out for a walk, yoga, run, swim, or whatever you love to do
- to stay in the shower a bit longer
- languish in a warm bath
- book a massage,
- get your hair done
- pick some flowers from the garden
- moisturise your skin
- treat yourself to a coffee/tea and sandwich out
- set the table for yourself like you would have it when you are seated in a restaurant
- meet an old friend
- do whatever brings you joy and suits your pocket.
Let’s get physical
When we exercise we create our own wonderful happy clappy feel-good hormones called endorphins. In case you didn’t know, endorphins create a really positive feeling in the body. When you think of it, we were hunter, gatherers back in the Stone Age. We were made to move, explore and get out into the world. Not to sit behind a desk all day or to stay on the proverbial hamster wheel of life and not have balance. This is all about striking a positive work-life, and home-life balance for you.
It would be great if you went outside into nature for a walk, swim, jog, cycle, dance, and look at the world outside. You literally get a different perspective on life, breathing space and once again time out from the norm.
Dance like there is nobody around and even at that who cares. Music is so evocative.
Have a bop to these uplifting songs (you must have Spotify to access the songs) and raise your vibrations. Better still make your own playlist or just tune into your favourite radio station that plays tunes you love.
Listen to what lifts you up, brings a smile to your face, makes your foot tap, and then allow the rhythm to move through your body.
Pick up the phone, chat with a friend, get out and join a group.
We are by our very nature social creatures. Some of us to a greater degree than others. We know from the pandemic how vital connection is. Feeling wanted, a sense of belonging, and part of something other than ourselves.
Get outside and build those new connections and strengthen old ones.
Join a club, volunteer, stop and talk to a neighbour on your road, or meet someone in person.
Connection builds a sense of belonging and community. It also strengthens our mental health and well-being. It has been proven that people who are more sociable tend to live longer, more fulfilled, and happier lives.
- What could I do today to connect with someone?
- What would make me happy?
Accept that things are the way they are for the moment.
Accept what you can control and let go of what you cannot control. There is great freedom in letting go of that which is out of your control. Give that a whirl and you will know and appreciate what I mean.
Know this too will pass as nothing ever stays still. Everything in life is cyclical and changes.
When you are grateful for all that you have and all those in your life, you are better able to deal with any adversity. Gratitude makes you realise that you are probably better off than someone else and enables you to feel (a bit) better about your current situation. I mean if you have a roof over your head, heat, and food in your belly, you’re doing a heck of a lot better than a huge amount of the world’s population. You begin to realise that ok the situation could be a lot better and you wish that you didn’t have to deal with x,y, and z, BUT when you look at what is going on for others are you really that bad off? Notice how you’re less stressed and so much more appreciative and grateful for what you do have.
I really value and appreciate you if you opened this blog post and read some of it. Thank you!
If you managed to read all of it I am grateful to you too and I hope you find it of use and helpful to yourself. Thank You!
Should you feel someone else could benefit please share, as they might just need a little nudge. THANK YOU!