We all know that stress in life is a guarantee. Stress is necessary for life and can be a positive motivator. However, when it starts to become too much for our bodies and minds to process, it can start to present in many ways that can be frustrating, overwhelming or downright alarming. Symptoms of too much stress can present itself mentally, physical and emotionally.
Some of the mental effects of too much stress can be subtle at first. Trouble learning new information is often associated with aging but can also be attributed to stress overload. Forgetfulness and difficulty making decisions are other ways that stress can affect your brain (ask any new mom!). Confusion and disorganization are two more signs that your stress levels are beyond a healthy level and that it is time to start seeking stress management solutions.
Most people are more aware of the physical side effects of stress. Headaches, grinding teeth, muscle spasms, neck and back pain just to name a few. Some physical symptoms are less known such as light headedness, dry mouth, hives and tremors. Other physical ways stress can present are heartburn, stomach pain, nausea and difficulty breathing. After ruling out any medical conditions, stress management is critical for reacquiring quality of life.
Emotional effects of stress are often the most disturbing for people. Just a few of the symptoms that people can experience are frequent crying, irritability, increased anger, depression, feeling overloaded and loneliness.
How you will manage stress will be different than every other person, but I will share a few ideas with you to help you get started. Meditation is something you can do anywhere and there are lots of free resources to get you started. Exercise is a great way to release natural endorphins in the body and reduce stress, even something as simple as taking a walk can help. Regular massage therapy can be a way to reduce stress and alleviate the pain associated with it. Other ways to manage stress include yoga, listening to music, reducing your workload, spending time in nature and visiting friends. If you are ever overwhelmed, reach out to your doctor for evaluation or resources.