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.