Did you know April is National Stress Awareness Month? Stress is not a fun thing to think about and sometimes just thinking about stress and all of the things you're stressing out about can lead to-- you guessed it!--
It's important to know that stress is a natural part of life. We all know what stress feels like but it is also hard to define because it means different things to different people.
Stress can be both physical and mental.
- You may feel physical stress as the result of too much to do, not enough sleep, a poor diet, or the effects of an illness. Physical stress can manifest itself as increased blood pressure, heart rate, respiration, or metabolism.
- You may feel mental stress when you worry about money, a loved one's illness, retirement, or experience an emotionally devastating event. When you're stressed you can feel out of control of your emotions and may not know how to handle them.
How do I know if I am suffering from stress?
Every person handles stress differently. Some people actually seek out situations which may appear to be stressful to others! A major life decision might be overwhelming for some people, while others may welcome the change. Some find sitting in traffic too much to tolerate, while others take it in stride. The key is determining your personal tolerance levels for stressful situations.
can be helpful in determining your level of stress and if you need to take further action on your symptoms.
Stress can also be positive!
Positive stress is called
and is short-term.
can motivate and focus your energy, feel exciting, is perceived as being inside of our coping abilities, and can improve performance.
is the negative stress we need to monitor and look out for.
can be short- or long-term, feels unpleasant, decreases performance, is perceived as being outside of our coping abilities, and can lead to mental and physical problems.