Do you often feel stressed? article image

Do you often feel stressed?

Stress is basically a good and necessary function for us that has enabled us to get out of dangerous situations, especially in the past. In the past, stress was an acute reaction to immediate danger such as a hungry lion. It was a short-term and transient stress response developed to benefit our survival and followed by recovery.

In today's society, we live with a different type of stress where deadly animals are not the most common cause but it is about everyday puzzles, work, relationships, finances, separations and social situations as examples. Moreover, stress today is rarely acute and short-lived as it was in the past, but long-term and chronic. This long-term form of stress does not benefit us, but is, on the contrary, downright harmful. We need recovery to endure and without it, the body never gets the rest it needs to replenish itself with new energy.

Signs that you are stressed

When you feel stressed, it means a big energy boost for the body and can cause many different symptoms. Some of the most common symptoms are, difficulty concentrating, poor memory, moodiness and anxiety, sleep problems, easily irritated, fatigue, stomach problems, muscle pain, comfort eating, palpitations, dizziness, pressure on the chest, headaches, etc.

What often happens if you deal with chronic stress over a long period of time is that it leads to exhaustion and burnout. The road back from burnout can be long and requires a lot of work, so it's important to take the warning signs seriously and do something about your situation before it gets too far.

What happens in the body?

When we (our brain) perceive a situation as threatening, signals are sent to the sympathetic nervous system immediately and the body goes into "fight and flight". The sympathetic nervous system then directly affects our breathing, blood pressure and pulse, i.e. functions we cannot control ourselves by will. This happens with the help of different stress hormones - cortisol, norepinephrine and adrenaline which are secreted from the adrenal glands and sent into the blood. These hormones cause the heart rate and blood pressure to rise and ensure that the muscles and brain quickly get energy in the form of sugar. We become more pain tolerant, digestion stops and all organs that are not needed for escape receive less blood flow. These functions are very important for running away from dangerous animals or otherwise fighting for your life, as humans did in the past. In today's society, we rarely run away from deadly animals, but the stress reaction in the body is the same, albeit for other reasons.

How do you prevent stress?

A key in preventing stress is to practice saying no, i.e. don't take on more tasks than you can handle and set clear boundaries. This of course applies both privately and at the workplace. Prioritize recovery so that the body gets rest and an opportunity to recharge, sleep is very important! Exercise and healthy food are of course also important parts in preventing stress as it strengthens the body and creates resilience and provides better conditions for you to handle everyday life with all that it entails.

Lovely feel-good tips!

  • Surround yourself with people who make you happy!
  • Practice a form of exercise you enjoy
  • Eat healthy good food
  • Go for a massage
  • Prioritize good sleep
  • Do things you enjoy as often as you can
  • Listen to inspirational podcasts
  • Read a really good book
  • Make your home a cozy, lovely place to be
  • Get fresh air every day if possible
  • Walks
  • Listen to nice music

The list of things that make you happy and make you feel good can certainly be made even longer, you know best what works for you. Focus on what is positive and create more of it in your everyday life. Try to influence the things that weigh you down and if you can't influence them, try to accept them. <3