An ‘optimal’ level of stress, should motivate but not overwhelm us.

All of us will experience stress in our lives, it is important we understand what causes stress and how to manage. There is no one-size-fits-all solution but there are foundational mental and behavioural actions we can engage in to alleviate and prevent serious illness and the impact of stress.

What leads to stress

Stress occurs when an imbalance exists between environmental demands and an individual’s capacity to meet those demands. Some stress can produce positive results (e.g. competitiveness) and some stress can produce negative results (e.g. worrying or work overload). The aim is to reach our ‘optimal’ level of stress, which will motivate us, but not overwhelm us. Our bodies will let us know when we are feeling stressed, sometimes long before we are consciously aware of the reason for this. Importantly, people around us will often notice our reactions to stress before we do.

When stress should be addressed

If you find you are having difficulty sleeping, noticing changes in eating patterns, high levels of frustration and irritability, difficulty relaxing, feelings of being overwhelmed, and not coping with the day-to-demands of life, make an appointment. Don’t wait until stress has manifested in a way that affects your work, family, relationships, or health.

Stress Therapy Nowra
Psychologist Berry


  • Exercise – regular exercise has many benefits. It does not necessarily mean training for an endurance race or power lifting at the gym. Taking time during the day to walk around the office, stretch or go outside for fresh air. 20-30 minutes a day walking can significantly reduce stress and improve your mood.
  • Eat well – stress levels and a healthy diet are closely related. Plan meals ahead with plenty of fruits and vegetables; avoid sugary snacks.
  • Breathe – focused breathing can generate relaxation in the body, quieten the mind and oxygenates your blood. Sit in your chair with your feet flat on the floor and hands on top of your knees. Spend 3-5 minutes slowly inhaling and exhaling, focusing on your lungs as they expand and contract.

Latest articles

Shoalhaven Psychology Services Values

Shoalhaven Psychology Services Values

Humility. Equality. Growth. Gratitude. These are the four core values that represent what we stand for and how we provide our services at Shoalhaven Psychology Services.

Birthday Bonanza Giveaway

Birthday Bonanza Giveaway

To celebrate the second birthday of our Kiama office, we are throwing a week long Birthday Bonanza Giveaway and gifting you with some of our favourite things – including a stay at Bangalay Luxury Villas!

“Life is a balance of holding on and letting go”