The theme for this year's Mental Health Awareness Week is around Stress. Are we coping?
Everyone gets stressed at times, right?
Being stressed is a normal part of life and although it can be unpleasant at times, it can also be useful to us. It can help with our motivation and drive to do well and perform at our best. Think about that time when you had an exam, job interview, got married or had a driving test.
Stress can feel both physical and psychological with symptoms ranging from feeling panicked, sick, dizzy, experiencing headaches, tired and tense to irritable, worried, low in mood, unable to enjoy yourself or feeling afraid. Although it's perfectly normal to feel this way from time to time, if you begin to feel overwhelmed by your stress levels or if your stress doesn’t seem to go away, this could quickly become a bigger issue.
A great way to deal with Stress is to recognise that you are feeling under pressure and then explore ways of reducing the things in your life that you find stressful.
In reality, some stressors you won’t be able to combat altogether, but by making small lifestyle changes and minimising the things that you can, will help you feel less stressed.
Here are some top 'stress less' tips to help you get started:
1. Try to pin point the things that cause you to feel stressed – does this happen frequently? Is it a particular activity, event or person in your life? Try to make some changes or get support with it.
2. Make lists and priorities your tasks – striking things off a list when completed is such a satisfying feeling.
3. Take a break and reduce your pace – try slowing things down and taking more time with tasks.
4. Try different hobbies and interest – this will help to distract from the way you are feeling and will help you to relax and enjoy yourself.
5. Try different relaxation techniques – this could be a hot bath, a walk with the dog, Zumba, Yoga, Mindfulness or a good book. Whatever floats your boat.
6. Get a good night sleep – sleeping well can help you to process things and put them into perspective. This will help you to become more able to deal with problems.
7. Be more active and eat well – there is lots of evidence to suggest that being more active can significantly reduce stress levels as well as eating healthy, nutritious meals.
8. Spend time with others – this will help you to feel more relaxed and less isolated. Others may also help you to put your worries into perspective or help you to overcome them. A problem shared is a problem halved.
9. Explore talking therapies, medication or alternative therapies – there are lots of useful treatments and support services out there which are free and easy to access.
10. Learn to accept that some things we can’t control or change – this is a difficult thing to accept however doing so will help you to move on to focus on the things that you can change.
This week we are focusing on workplace stress and how it can impact an individual. Did you know we offered training to businesses and organisations?
This covers packages such as mental health first aid, workplace wellbeing and mindfulness. Visit our page for more details.