Stress is the plague of the 21st century. It’s pandemic. 80% of GP visits are stress-related and it has become a Health and Safety requirement to address stress in the workplace.
According to the Government’s Health and Safety Executive (HSE), stress-related sickness absence resulted in 13.5 million lost working days in 2001, at a cost to UK economy of up to £3.7 billion.
Recent data from Stress and Health at Work surveys show that 563,000 individuals in Britain were suffering from work-related stress, depression or anxiety, with almost 20% of working individuals surveyed rating their work as ‘very’ and ‘extremely’ stressful.Reasons for stress are many.
From losing a job or being stuck in the wrong career to financial worries and relationship blues, but, whatever the causes for stress, they can be equally damaging to health, to relationships and to life in general.
When you’re stressed and depressed you have no confidence. But you need to build up that confidence by getting motivated.
And, once you are motivated to take action in one part of your life, the rest will follow.
So how do we know when we’re stressed?
Stress indicators include increased migraines and headaches, plus a combination of avoiding worrying situations or being unable to switch off worrying thoughts. It could be someone can’t sleep or eat. But if you start becoming ill a lot or creating friction with your relationships, you’re likely to be suffering from genuine stress.
And how can we eliminate stress from our lives?
By TAKING ACTION! No matter how small.
The most common stress is the build up of little things that make it worse. And stress levels only rise until you take action. So, if you can do something about stress in your life; do it. If you hate your job – get a new one, or if you are getting buried under work, delegate. Dealing with stress is a lengthy process of learning how to relax, how to let go and unwind and learning to take action to make changes.
As Bobby Hashemi of Coffee Republic says, “You can eat an elephant if you tackle it one bite
at a time.” The same is true of stressful situations and circumstances. Whatever is causing you to be stressed – your place of work, the people at work, your debts, your family, your relationships or that traffic-jam… force yourself to look at the problem, stop, reflect and do the following:
Stop! Take four deep breaths – slowly. This can be more helpful to de-stressing than you’d think.
Take action. Send off your CV, take up a new hobby, call up an old friend, speak to the person causing you stress after drawing up a list of points to get across, switch your credit card or prioritise your debts in order of highest interest rates/importance, ask for advice – do something, just take action to resolve the problem, one bit at a time.
Let it go! You’re stuck in a traffic jam. Yes it’s annoying. No, you can’t do anything about it.
So, you may as well take a deep breath, smile, turn the radio up and daydream about something nice, or, use the time wisely – jot down your ‘to do list’ or a wish-list for your life. Choose not to get stressed. The alternative is to get stressed but nothing will have changed, you’ll still be sat in that traffic jam. Once you’ve taken action to resolve the stress-inducing issues in your life, let them go! Forgive people, look at others in a fresh light, give yourself and others a chance and enjoy life.
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