This article provides some insight into one of the most common killers in today’s society of high pressure and tighter time constraints for everything that we do. It is noted that stress and the related time away from the workplace costs the American economy $190 billion in healthcare and is the cause of over 120,000 deaths a year. All of us will be subject to stresses of various sorts and types in our modern lives. And the secret, as shared here, is to manage this stress.
Stress and your health
Stress hormones are used by our body and brain to coordinate the body’s flight or fight response. A quickening heart rate, faster breathing, and tensing muscles are all signs that the body is ready to react to a situation that has caused anxiety and then stress. It is indeed a natural process, but it is one that can be damaging to health if it happens too frequently and for day-to-day issues that one needs to deal with. If your job causes anxiety on a regular basis and is thus stressful, you need to be able to be manage this and deal with it.
Allowing anxiety about a situation to cause stress—which can then become physically debilitating—is bad for your health. Most jobs will have stressful moments; and most professionals, from financial and wealth managers to NASCAR drivers, have to find ways to relax and de-stress due the stressful nature of their job, but there are ways to manage the entire process:
Know your triggers
You need to know what it is that causes you to feel anxious and then stressed. If it is a mild response and not very frequent, then it may be easy to deal with it by using the techniques below. However, if it occurs on a regular basis and the level of stress is high—resulting in an extremely elevated heart rate or intense, uncontrollable emotions—then you need to seek professional guidance and possibly look at a calming medication.
Have an immediate coping response
When you feel stress building or have to deal with a situation that causes one of your triggers, then you will need to engage in a coping mechanism such as deep breathing or counting until your heart rate slows down.
Be more mindful
It is a bit of a buzz word, but it has been proven to work with managing stress and being able to both avoid and overcome difficult situations. Understanding a situation and knowing your thoughts will allow you to be slower to react to stress triggers. Mindfulness will also mean being aware of the emotions of others and factoring this into your own response.
Speak to those who are involved
If the activity relates to a specific person or work situation, then you may be able to discuss this with the person involved or a manager. Many a time stress is about who is in the specific situation with you or based on conflict and confrontation. Often, a word in privacy about how someone’s behavior makes you feel can serve to change such behavior. So, speak out and say what makes you feel anxious.
It is worth keeping in mind that it is when emotions are high, and we are “stressed” that we make the most mistakes. So, breathe, and as the say across the pond, Keep Calm and Carry on.