Every person will eventually feel stressed more than one point in their lives. Stress is your mind and body’s way of responding to threats, difficult internal or external situations or complicated emotions.

Stress can affect your mood, behaviour and physical body. Remember it is entirely normal to have feelings of anxiety or worry.

It’s even more concerning if you don’t have reactions to stress. However, sometimes stress can become more severe than we can manage.

Moreover, at most times, we don’t even notice the difference between healthy and unhealthy stress.

We need to be able to distinguish these two levels of stress, as unhealthy amounts of pressure can lead to more significant problems.

How Much Stress is Too Much?

Yes, stress is entirely normal, but knowing when it is becoming a severe problem is the first step to being able to manage it and counter it appropriately.

Many of the below symptoms are common during times of stress. However, if any of them becomes overwhelming or stops you from leading a normal life, then it’s time to take action or seek help.

If tension develops into a severe problem and isn’t managed correctly, it may lead to more severe health and wellbeing problems.

Psychological effects of stress include:

  • Anxiety
  • Anger
  • Sadness
  • Uncontrollable/Unstable emotions
  • Inability to think properly

Behavioural effects of stress include:

  • Random or sudden outbursts
  • Social anxiety or withdrawal
  • Use of substances and drugs
  • Overeating or undereating

Physical effects of stress include:

  • Headaches
  • Muscle or joint tension and pain
  • Sleep Problems
  • Stomachaches
  • Chest pain
  • Tiredness or fatigue

Managing and Countering Stress

Here are some useful ways of managing and countering the symptoms of stress.

Get Active

Start increasing your physical activity levels. This can be either adopting a new sport or only taking a half an hour of walk around your neighbourhood.

This can help you to take your mind off stressful or unhappy thoughts, get some fresh air and unwind from distractions.

Breaking a sweat and getting a physical workout also helps the body to release endorphins that can help to boost your mood.

Get Social

Speak out about your problems with others. Your conversations don’t have to result in an action as talking is the most imporant thing to note here.

The physical act of communicating face to face and being listened to can take a psychological weight off of your shoulders.

To know that another person is aware of your story and is listening can alleviate feelings of loneliness or insecurity.

Get Some Rest

Resting well by sleeping or taking a power nap will do so much benefit to you physically, mentally and psychologically.

Having sufficient rest will help you conserve your energy, so you don’t feel fatigued. Being well also rested results in a clarity of mind. This way you won’t let the emotions control your mood or day.

Eat Healthily

Stress can sometimes make us binge eat, indulge bad foods and develop poor eating habits. The best way to counter pressure or overwhelming emotions is to live a healthier lifestyle.

Moreover, getting active is just one component of it. Incorporating a healthy diet will help you feel better in the body and also mind.

Stick to fresh and nutritious foods because a healthy body creates a healthy mind.

Stop. Relax. Start Again.

You can’t stop stress from entering your life and affecting your wellbeing. However, you can manage the extent of its effects on your life and control them.

Being able to control your mindset and emotions is the key to doing this. Being able to keep your emotions in check can give you back control over your mind and body when stress tries to take its control is an important mindset to have.

Try slow breathing techniques or meditation. By being able to control your mind, you give yourself the chance to control your thinking and emotions. In turn, you will feel a sense of balance and stability over your mental health.

If you feel stress is getting too much for you and can’t be handled on your own, you don’t have to handle it alone. There are many people out there for you.

It is highly advised to reach out to a support network or speak with a professional medical practitioner for the best advice or medication. Never be afraid to speak your issues.

Head over to the Okadoc app to immediately book an appointment with your health practitioner.