How to Determine the Source of Your Stress

Research from the American Institute of Stress suggests that the majority of people in America, and other areas of the world as well, suffer from the same effects of stress on a regular basis. 77 percent of people regularly experience the common symptoms of stress, including an upset stomach, fatigue and headaches. Likewise, 73 percent of people experience the psychological symptoms as well as the physical, which include anger, lethargy and irritability. 48 percent of people feel that this has a negative impact on both their personal and professional lives, which could worsen over time. For nearly a third of the people questioned, stress is a common factor of everyday life which resurfaces regularly. Stress related illnesses cost employers in American over $300 billion each year, due to absences. Stress, it seems, isn’t just a problem for individuals but for the larger group as well.

There are two types of stress – good and bad. Good stress helps your body motivate itself when under threat, with your mind setting off a chemical reactions which kicks your body into gear when it’s necessary. While this would have once been a physical ‘run or fight’ situation when faced with threatening animals, times have changed and we rarely have to face something physical when this stress comes into play. The chemical reaction is still prevalent though and heightens your awareness to situations so you can act accordingly, such as hitting the brake on your car when a cut cuts you up on the motorway, for example. While it may not always feel particularly good, this type of stress is good for you and offers an immediate response to the world around you. However, bad stress is different. Work is a big cause of stress for many people, which is when stress lingers for a long period of time. This form of stress leads to headaches and illnesses, which you want to avoid.

You can avoid and limit bad stress though, which is the good news. Growth and changes in your life can be difficult to get your head around, but they’re necessary to avoid illnesses. You will need to step up to the challenge or you’ll flounder for months and become more stressed by the work commitments you face. If you’re struggling, speak to someone – there’s no shame in asking for help.

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