It’s common knowledge that a lot of stress is bad for us – but why is it? What does it actually do to us? In this blog post, we’re going to be talking about just that.
Stress affects us in a range of ways, and these ways can be generalised into four categories: Emotional, Physical, Behavioural and Psychological. So, let’s explore them all.
When we’re stressed we can experience a whole host of negative emotions. We might feel out of control, unmotivated, angry, irritable. We also might experience low confidence and low self esteem, tearfulness, mood swings, and defensiveness.
It might come as a surprise that stress affects us physically, as many people have the misconception that it happens only in our heads. However, stress triggers our fight our flight response which means that our body physically reacts to it with a whole range of symptoms. If you’re really stressed you might experience body aches, muscle tension, teeth grinding and common colds or infections. You might also hyperventilate, feel as though there is a lump in your throat, have heart palpitations, pins and needles, dizziness and nausea. Other physical symptoms of stress include panic attacks, fatigue, menstrual changes and a decline or loss of libido.
All of the emotional and physical symptoms that stress causes eventually starts to impact your behaviours. You might experience social withdrawal, relationship issues, insomnia or fatigue, recklessness, aggression or nervousness. You might also find that you lie more, are more accident prone, forgetful, become dependent on substances, have poor time management and poor standards of work.
Finally, stress takes a toll on us psychologically too. This is because we become unable to reason with our stress or our triggers. You may become unable to concentrate, worry excessively, experience negative thinking, depression, anxiety, lapses in memory, and find that you’re easily distracted.
It’s no surprise then, with stress affecting all of these things, that it can result in long term mental and physical issues.
Stress can result in mental health disorders such as anxiety, panic attacks and depression. It can increase your chances of a heart attack, high cholesterol, diabetes and strokes. It can cause weight gain, and a change in your appetite. It can cause IBS and rapid weight loss. It can lead to isolation and agoraphobia (the fear of leaving the house). It can result in irregular and painful periods, impotence and the inability to reproduce. It can cause skin problems, muscle aches, low bone density and a weakened immune system.
So all of these things sound like something you want to avoid, right? Thankfully – we can help you to manage your stress levels so that your stress never causes any of the above!
Our new book 8Wise Ways To A Healthier Happier Mind will help you to keep your stress levels under control. You can pre-order it HERE