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Let’s talk about…stress

April is stress awareness month.

I’ve decided to start a new series each month where I talk about a topic that’s on my mind. I’ve had this idea for a couple of months but have been too busy to even think about writing it. However, there is no perfect time which is why I’m starting at 10 pm the night before I’m meant to be uploading a post.

I wanted to write a blog post on stress. I like to write blog posts where I have solutions for mental health/the environment. When it came to stress, I was stumped. Ever since I saw a couple of months ago that April is stress awareness month, I couldn’t think of what to write about. I’m always feeling anxious and stress seems to go hand in hand with it. And I don’t blog about anxiety or depression very much because I don’t know what works. Even though I don’t think I have depression as such anymore, I don’t know what exactly to write about. I think that I’ll always have anxiety so I don’t know how to talk about that either. Stress seems somewhat similar so I just don’t really have an ‘x ways to cope with stress’ or ‘how I cope with stress’ post ready to upload.

I think it’s better if I have an open discussion.


So.

What is stress

Cambridge dictionary define it as ‘great worry caused by a difficult situation‘.

The above is a meaning defined by people who aren’t mental health professionals.

Mental Health Foundation defines it as ‘Stress is the feeling of being overwhelmed or unable to cope with mental or emotional pressure‘.

I think the two definitions work together well. Stress is the feeling of being overwhelmed in a difficult situation.

You may be thinking, why are you writing about definitions?

Well, you have to start somewhere. Stress means different things for different people. As you can see, the two definitions above were created by different groups of people in different professions. I think it’s really important to remember that we all experience stress, but we get through it in different ways. What works for me might not work for others and what works for others might not work for me. And that’s ok.


Triggers

We all have different triggers. It can be hard to even know what they are. We are in such a stressful time at the moment and have been for the past year. None of us has ever been through a global pandemic that is completely out of our control! It’s been a massive change and the amount of uncertainty has caused stress.

It is important to remember that, it might not be just one thing. Often for me, there are lots of little things that stress me out. It can build up over time and then the tiniest thing could happen, and I would just breakdown.

Our responses

Did you know that when we experience stress, our body chooses flight or fight? It creates a hormone and chooses so that we can act quickly in tricky situations. But, what if your body chooses neither? For me, my body completely freezes. Maybe this is why for me, stress and anxiety go hand in hand. I freeze and therefore spiral.

Symptoms

Stress often brings physical symptons as well as emotional and mental effects. Physical symptoms make it really hard to know whether it is a physical or mental problem…or both. I’ve been experiencing this for many years…but that’s a different story.

What are some physical symptoms of stress?

  • Stomach/digestive problems
  • Faster heartbeat
  • Sweating
  • Headache/dizziness
  • Muscle tension

Info from the NHS

What are some mental symptoms of stress?

You might think that mental symptoms are going to be easier to spot, but a lot of them are felt for a whole range of different mental health issues. You know your body best.

  • Forgetfullness
  • Indecisive
  • Worrying
  • Concentration issues
  • Overwhelming feelings

Info from the NHS

Stress has many more symptoms than the ones mentioned above. If you are feeling stressed, burned out, that you need some help then please reach out!


I’m learning now that I don’t always have to post solutions on here. Spreading awareness can be just talking, it can be learning what it really is, how to help others, how to help yourself etc.

Join in on the conversation!

Best wishes, Cx

49 thoughts on “Let’s talk about…stress”

  1. This is such a helpful post. Stress can cause so many health problems. I have certain things to do when I am feeling stressed. Spending time with family, my partner and watching my favourite shows can help me.

  2. Amazing post, pet! I always love reading about stress because it means people are finally waking up to it & how dangerous it is! I have something similar myself coming out tomorrow. x

  3. Thanks for making this post. I’m often not great at recognising the signs of when I’m stressed out as I tend to ignore the problem instead of facing it. But recently I’ve been trying to be more in tune with myself and recognise when I need to take a break <3

  4. I love how you talk about a range of mental and health issues! Stress is that one thing I’ve never quite been able to get hold of, and I’ve had WAY too many bad side effects from!

    Katie | katieemmabeauty.com

  5. This was so spot on Caroline! Stress is definitely a thing and while I feel like it is completely normal to get stressed out, stress is not a good thing. With our busy lives and all, we tend to get stressed but I have found that taking a break, a step back, distracting myself from everything and just trying to relax when I feel stressed does go a really long way!

  6. This is such an interesting topic. When I’m stressed I tend to binge eat and then just feel really sluggish. Now that I know the signs, I can recognise it and do something about it. I’m looking forward to reading more posts in this series.

  7. The best cure for stress is avoiding it. I know that’s impossible, but knowing what triggers us and avoiding it can be a great way to keep our sanity!

  8. I really like how you admitted you don’t have all the answers to dealing with stress, but wrote this post as an open discussion. Learning more about a topic can definitely help people to find solutions.
    I’m similar to you in that it’s rarely one big thing that stresses me out, it’s usually a combination of lots of little things that add up and make me feel overwhelmed.
    Thank you for writing this post!

  9. Amazing post! This really helps me remember that stress can lead to other health problems so I should control it a bit more!

  10. I think this was a great post! Blog posts don’t always have to have a solution, I totally agree with you. Sometimes just using your platform as a way of having open discussions about things is important too!

  11. It’s a helpful post in raising awareness about stress. People with anxieties get overwhelmed more when dealing with it. It affects their health in the long run. Seeking help is a great way to deal with it.

    Thanks for sharing your own experience.

  12. This was such a great post and love how you said that we need to spread awareness and not only talking about solutions, as with stress, it very much depends on the person. I usually take time to read, spend some time alone and cuddle with my cat. Thanks for sharing x

  13. Great post! It’s important to spread awareness, I feel like it’s not really treated as a serious issue, even though stress can cause so many health problems. I get stressed quite easily, but usually playing some video games or watch something to relax which helps me! x

  14. Creating awareness of any mental health issues is so important and stress is a big one. A lot of people will struggle with this, even mildly and understanding the need to be open about how we feel is so important.

    I think stress is something I struggle with more than I realise x

  15. I always here the word stress but never read the actually definition of it. I also had no idea that this month was stress awareness month, that is great. Stress really can affect your day to day life. I always can tell when I get stressed, I usually feel more tired and my mind more foggy. This is great information.

  16. This is such a helpful post and love the idea of blogging about exactly what is on your mind! I have been a lot more stressed recently due to returning to work after maternity leave. I think it is is just about finding the perfect balance! x

  17. Thank you so much for sharing and raising some awareness – so many of us deal with stress every day and it can be so damaging both physically and mentally. I’ve found work is one of my main triggers and as a result my stomach suffers majorly, it’s a vicious cycle!

  18. Nice post – interesting to know some of the symptom1. I think I usually start breathing quite heavily when I’m stressed, but usually I’m able to slow down and rationalise my way through it slowly (but sometimes not)

  19. Wonderful post, I really like your writing style!
    Awareness is so important and I agree that it’s crutial to learn about something fully to then act and find solutions to it. Having said this, different people will have different solutions so it’s great you’ve opened up the conversation and once people are informed they can digest the information and act in their personal best interest.

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