Stress can be a good thing. In small or moderate amounts, stress can energize and motivate you to be
productive and get more done in a shorter period. But too much stress or chronic levels of stress, or an
exaggerated response to lesser amounts of stress, can cause serious medical and emotional problems.
We all face stress in our lives, and it comes at us every day from multiple directions, including in our
relationships, at work, from family, and from external events. What is extremely stressful to one person may
not cause any stress in another. Some people develop a generalized anxiety condition that causes them to
worry constantly about many things. Panic attacks can happen out of the blue, with sudden and inexplicable
fear and symptoms of severe acute anxiety.
Anxiety often is a result of stress — it is a feeling of apprehension or fear, and it may not always be
clear where the fear is coming from. But anxiety is usually a clear manifestation of stress, and the symptoms
of stress are mostly those of the anxiety.
Examples of stress symptoms include twitching or trembling, headaches, sweating, dry mouth and difficulty
swallowing, and abdominal pain. In the presence of more severe anxiety, dizziness, rapid or irregular heart
beats, rapid breathing, diarrhea, irritability, loss of temper, difficulty sleeping, poor concentration, and
impotence or loss of interest in sex may occur.
Some of the most common major life events that cause severe stress include:
- Death, divorce, or reconciliation with your spouse
Injury or Illness
Termination and unemployment
Arrest and conviction
Death of a family member or close friend
Most of us do not have an anxiety-stress or panic disorder. Rather, we face stress in our lives that we can and
should manage. By adopting a positive attitude, learning healthier ways to cope, and changing the way we deal
with stress, we can reduce its hold on our lives. /p>
Your ability to handle and bounce back from stress depends on many factors, including a:
- Sense of control
Strong support system
Ability to adapt to change
First steps in managing stress can be to identify the source and remove it or figure out how to adapt to it.
Sometimes, just talking with a friend or loved one about your stress is enough to relieve it.
Read through the tips and tricks for more specific ideas on what you can do to identify, remove, alter, or adapt
to the stresses in your life.