April is National Stress Awareness Month, designed to raise awareness of the negative impact of stress.
There is no single definition for stress, but the most common explanation is physical, mental, or emotional strain or tension. While not all stress is bad, long-term stress can have harmful impacts on physical and mental health.
It’s critical to recognise what stress and anxiety look like, take steps to build resilience and manage stress, and know where to go for help.
Whether you’re 5 or 50, going to work or school, or dealing with family life or relationship issues, fear and anxiety can be overwhelming. How you cope with these emotions and stress can affect your wellbeing, the wellbeing of the people you care about, your workplace, and your community.
First, recognise the symptoms of stress you may be experiencing
- Talk about how you’re feeling: identify things that cause stress and work to identify solutions, talk openly with friends, family members, colleagues, and employers – visit your GP, manage your expectations – be honest with yourself and others about what you can do, ssk about how to access mental health resources available
- Identify those things which you do not have control over and do the best you can with the resources available to you
- Increase your sense of control by developing a consistent daily routine when possible, including: keep a regular sleep schedule, take breaks from work, spend time outdoors, either being physically active or relaxing, if you work from home, set a regular time to end your work for the day, if possible, do things you enjoy during non-work hours
- Take breaks from watching, reading, or listening to news stories, including social media. Hearing about the latest crisis repeatedly can be upsetting and mentally exhausting
- If you feel you may be misusing alcohol or other drugs (including prescription drugs) as a means of coping, reach out for help.
- If you are being treated for a mental health condition, continue with your treatment and be aware of any new or worsening symptoms.
These are just a few tips for managing stress, you can also contact us to find out ways that we might be able to help.