Stress is the body’s way of protecting you. When working properly, it helps you stay focused, energetic, and alert. In case of emergency, stress can save your life, giving you the extra strength to defend yourself, for example, by spurring you to slam on the brakes to avoid an accident. But beyond a certain point, stress stops being helpful and starts causing major damage to your health, your mood, your productivity, your relationships, and your quality of life.
Causes of Stress
Everyone has different stress triggers. Work stress tops the list, according to surveys. Most people have admitted to experiencing office stress, and say that work is the biggest source of stress in their lives.
Causes of work stress include:
- Being unhappy with your job
- Having a heavy workload or too much responsibility
- Working long hours
- Having poor management, unclear expectations of your work, or no say in the decision-making process
- Working under dangerous conditions
- Being insecure about your chance for advancement or risk of termination
- Having to give speeches in front of colleagues
- Facing discrimination or harassment at work, especially if your company isn’t supportive
Life stresses can also have a big impact. Some examples of life stresses are:
- The death of a loved one
- Loss of a job
- Increase in financial obligations
- Getting married
- Moving to a new home
- Chronic illness or injury
- Emotional problems (depression, anxiety, anger, grief, guilt, low self-esteem)
- Taking care of an elderly or sick family member
Sometimes the stress comes from inside, rather than outside. You can stress yourself out just by worrying about things. All of these factors can lead to stress:
- Fear and uncertainty
- Attitudes and perceptions
- Unrealistic expectations
Effects of Stress on Your Health
When you are in a stressful situation, your body launches a physical response. Your nervous system springs into action, releasing hormones that prepare you to either fight or take off. This kind of stress is short-term and temporary (acute stress), and your body usually recovers quickly from it. If your stress system stays activated over a long period of time (chronic stress), it can lead to more serious health problems.
If you’ve been stressed out for a short period of time, you may start to notice some of these physical signs:
- Difficulty sleeping
- Difficulty concentrating
- Upset stomach
When stress becomes long-term and is not properly addressed, it can lead to a number of more serious health conditions, including:
- High blood pressure
- Abnormal heartbeat (arrhythmia)
- Hardening of the arteries (atherosclerosis)
- Heart disease
- Heart attack
- Heartburn, ulcers, irritable bowel syndrome
- Upset stomach — cramps, constipation, and diarrhoea
- Weight gain or loss
- Changes in sex drive
- Fertility problems
- Flare-ups of asthma or arthritis
- Skin problems such as acne, eczema, and psoriasis
When you’re constantly running in emergency mode, your mind and body pay the price. If you frequently find yourself feeling frazzled and overwhelmed, it’s time to take action to bring your nervous system back into balance.
Upping your activity level is something you can do right now to help yourself start to feel better. Regular exercise can lift your mood and serve as a distraction from worries, allowing you to break out of the cycle of negative thoughts that feed stress. Checkout our membership offers at Gold’s Gym Gurgaon to give your bosy it’s required dose of activity.
The simple act of talking face-to-face with another human can trigger hormones that relieve stress when you’re feeling uncomfortable, unsure, or unsafe.
Another fast way to relieve stress is by engaging one or more of your senses—sight, sound, taste, smell, touch, or movement. The key is to find the sensory input that works for you.
You can’t completely eliminate stress from your life, but you can control how much it affects you. Gold’s gym offers programs such as yoga that focus on meditation, and deep breathing to activate the body’s relaxation response, a state of restfulness that is the opposite of the fight or flight or mobilization stress response.
The food you eat can improve or worsen your mood and affect your ability to cope with life’s stressors. Eating a diet full of processed and convenience food and sugary snacks can worsen symptoms of stress while eating a diet rich in fresh fruit and vegetables, high-quality protein, and healthy fats, especially omega-3 fatty acids, can help you better cope with life’s ups and downs. Food served at 3 And a Half cafe might just be the dose of health that you are looking for!
Feeling tired can increase stress by causing you to think irrationally. At the same time, chronic stress can disrupt your sleep. Whether you’re having trouble falling asleep or staying asleep at night, there are plenty of ways to improve your sleep so you feel less stressed and more productive and emotionally balanced.