NI counselor’s top tips for managing and reducing stress


NI Councilor Ashley Duncan

Stress Awareness Month has been held in April every year since 1992 to raise awareness of the causes and causes of stress.

Stress is defined as a state of mental or emotional tension resulting from unfavorable circumstances. It can manifest in emotional, physical or mental symptoms such as anxiety, panic attacks, and feelings of exhaustion, to name a few.

Stress is more prevalent today than ever before because for most people, modern day life can be very hectic.

In today’s society we spend on performance, competition and perfection. Most of us have a lot of responsibilities, and that amount of social/emotional and mental burden can cause stress.

Stress is a normal emotional response to the demands of life and everyone experiences it at some point in the week, yet symptoms of stress can vary in severity. There are many levels of stress that sometimes manifest as just a bad mood or unfortunately lead to more complex illnesses.

stress levels

Low stress levels are what most of us struggle with at some point. Usually this is not a problem and can motivate and motivate us to get things done.

Acute stress can have a detrimental effect on our mood and general well-being and can lead to unwanted problems in our daily lives, manifested by irritability, difficulty regulating emotions, or feeling overwhelmed.

Chronic stress disrupts nearly every system in your body. It can suppress the immune system, disrupt the digestive and reproductive systems, and increase the risk of serious health problems such as heart attack and stroke.

If stress levels are kept low without resolution and management, it can unfortunately develop, so ignoring the subtle signs of stress can lead to more serious health problems.

It’s important to recognize the signs early and take steps to reduce feelings of stress.

Common signs of stress

  • Feeling angry more than usual.
  • Mood swings, mood swings or emotional feelings.
  • The tasks you normally do can be stressful or unusually challenging.
  • Sleep problems such as sleeping more or less than usual.
  • Cognitive problems such as overthinking, negative thinking, or difficulty making decisions.
  • Withdrawal or isolation, avoiding social interaction or feeling detached from others/self.

Stress should not be taken lightly, if you are experiencing any of the symptoms listed above, it may be helpful to take some steps to reduce stress. If feelings persist, professional help may be needed.

stress management

The first step in reducing stress is knowing what is causing you. Knowing what triggers your stress will help you deal with it, allowing you to take better care of yourself during the effects of stress.

Learning this will also help you work on your answers.

The next step is to be aware of the warning signs of stress. What are the first signs of stress for you? It could be irritability or a lack of motivation for things you normally enjoy.

The last step is knowing how to relieve stress? Find out what relieves stress, and with that in mind, create a stress management plan.

Practice these coping skills in your week, and here are some examples to keep in mind:

  • Exercising, even getting outdoors or doing light physical exercises like walking, can really help.
  • Eat Right, There is mounting evidence to show how food affects our mood and how healthy eating can improve it.
  • Deep breathing, a few deep breaths when you feel stressed, can help the body adapt.
  • Spend some time away from the situation, even if it’s only for a few seconds. Making time for yourself on a regular basis will help you avoid crowding.
  • Mediation and Meditation are perfect for reducing stress and clearing your mind, here are some very simple apps like Headspace to help you get started if you are new to mediation.
  • Do what works for you, put pressure on yourself, rely on those around you for support, and be kind to yourself when you immerse yourself.

Source: Belfastlive


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