Most common problem being faced by almost everyone, especially during this pandemic, STRESS.
Sounds familiar, right?
●What exaclty is stress?
Stress is a state of mental or emotional strain or tension resulting from adverse or demanding circumstances. It can come from any event or thought that makes you feel frustrated, angry or nervous. In short bursts, stress can be positive, such as when it helps you avoid danger or meet a deadline. But when stress lasts for a long time it may harm your health.
There are two main types of stress:-
■ACUTE STRESS: the short-term stress which goes away quickly. It occurs when you do something new or exciting. You may feel this when you slam on the breaks , have a fight with a close one, etc. Everyone has this kind of stress at one time or another
■ CHRONIC STRESS: the stress which lasts for a longer period of time. It goes on for weeks or months. Reason of chronic stress can be money problem, unhappy relationship, trouble at work, etc.
●Your body and stress
Your body reacts to stress by releasing hormones. These hormones make your brain more alert, cause your muscles to tense and increase your pulse. In short term these reactions are good because they can help you handle the situation causing stress. This is your body’s way of protecting itself. But overtime, this puts you at risk for various health issues .
●Pandemic and stress
According to various research and surveys, highest level of stress is seen during this noval pandemic. The nation is facing collective trauma at this point of time. Prolonged stress can affect both physical and mental health. This pandemic has given a lot of reasons for stress, such as
•People spend whole day sitting in front of screens, going through a lot of work load. •Following improper routine of sleep.
•And there are people who are idle and are just overthinking which leads to stress.
●Management of stress
If you’re living with high stress levels you’re putting your entire health at risk. It narrows your ability to think clearly, function effectively, and enjoy life.
Effective stress management helps you break the hold stress has on your life, so you can be healthier, happier and more productive.You might think that there is nothing you can do about stress, but there are several ways which would help you overcome this issue. The following steps can help you do that:
Step 1: Identify the source of stress in your life
To identify your true sources of stress, look closely at your habits, attitude, and excuses:
▪Do you explain away stress as temporary (“I just have a million things going on right now”) even though you can’t remember the last time you took a breather?
▪Do you define stress as an integral part of your work or home life (“Things are always crazy around here”) or as a part of your personality (“I have a lot of nervous energy, that’s all”)?
▪Do you blame your stress on other people or outside events, or view it as entirely normal and unexceptional?
Until you accept responsibility for the role you play in creating or maintaining it, your stress level will remain outside your control.
Step 2: Practice the 4A’s of stress management
▪AVOIDE UNNECESSARY STRESS
Not every stress is bad, so don’t avoide every stressful situation that hits since that may have a negative effect. You can do this by:-
•SAY ‘NO’- avoide and say ‘NO’ to the objects and and situations, which are out of your limits and those which distract you from your task.
•Manage your task- analyze your ‘to do’ list in terms of ”must do” and ”should do” task.
▪ ALTER THE SITUATION
Try alter the situation in case it is not possible avoid it. For example, exam, that to be of a subject you’ve no interest, how stressful they are, in this case you can share your emotions and thoughts with your friends instead of just bottling them up. Holding on such emotions could lead to negative feelings and mental health issues.
Hence, express your feelings whether it be by talking to a friend or writing it down in a diary.
▪ADAPT TO THE STRESSOR
At times, there’s nothing you can do to change the stressor. Instead change the way you perceive the stress. For instance, when you’re stressing about your studies, visualise that you’re climbing a ladder and that your goal getting through that is at the top. As you complete understanding each concept, take a break and realise you’ve just got one step higher towards that goal.
▪ ACCEPT THE UNCHANGEABLE
Finally, some situations and stressors are unchangeable and nothing you do can change that. For us students, this means no matter how much we want our assignment or exams to go away- it won’t. Accepting that and moulding our schedule accordingly is the only option to keep the stress under control.
This way you can save yourself from various mental health issues.