Stress and anxiety
There’s a fine line between being ‘stretched’ and ‘stressed’ – being ‘stretched’ is nature’s way of helping us learn, solve problems and feel energised, in a healthy way. Being ‘stressed’ can be overwhelming, leading to an inability to think straight, poor sleep and low mood. In very simple terms we feel ‘stressed’ when pressures and demands on us prevent one or more of our innate needs from being met and we feel incapable of doing anything about it. It might be one big thing that is causing stress, or a build-up of small pressures. We are all unique, so how we perceive and manage stress depends on our experiences and personal resilience - what is stressful for one person may not be perceived in the same way by another.
Signs of stress can include irritability, feelings of being over-burdened, being anxious, depressed or neglected, or perhaps feel that you have lost interest in life. You may find it hard to make simple decisions or to concentrate, or feel tearful. There are also physical indicators of stress; when we’re stressed or feel anxious our bodies release hormones called cortisol and adrenaline – our body’s way of responding to a perceived threat (also called the ‘fight, flight or freeze’ response). High levels of these hormones can make you feel physically unwell, for example aches, pains, migraines or gut problems which could affect your health over the longer term.
Working with the right therapist for you is one way to take a positive step forward, reducing the negative impact that stress is having on your life and developing your emotional resilience to adapt to your challenges, both now and in the future.