What is Stress?
Stress affects everyone, and is a completely normal reaction that all human beings will experience when faced with situations that put them under pressure.
The word stress is usually used to describe the feelings that people experience when the demands made on them are greater than their ability to cope. At such times people feel overloaded, under too much pressure and emotional
There are external and internal causes of stress. External causes could include traumatic life experiences or simply daily hassles. Internal causes of stress are often the most common. They are thoughts and feelings that cause you to feel unease, these can include unrealistic expectations, uncertainties, low self-worth and personal apprehensions
Your place of work could be a key factor in stress, but not the only one. A study found that more than half of people in work had suffered from workplace stress over a year. Also a quarter of working people had taken time off sick due to stress. Common causes of stress at work include; unrealistic workloads, excessive long hours, responsibilities of role and conflicting expectations, bullying or harassment, lack of job security, poor working environment, lack of career development and support.
If you suspect you may be suffering please ensure you visit your GP who will be able to make a formal diagnosis.
What is anxiety?
Anxiety is a natural unpleasant response to stress. It can affect us all in different ways and at different times. Whereas stress is something that will come and go as the causes of it come and go, be it a work, relationship or money problems. Anxiety is something that can persist whether or not the cause is clear to the sufferer.
Anxiety can make a person think that things in their life are worse than they really are, and prevent them from doing things. Often they will think they are ill, or that some psychological problem is getting worse.
What is important is the recognition that anxiety is normal and exists due to a set of bodily functions that have existed in us from our cave-man days.
Some Physical Symptoms of anxiety
* Increased heart rate
* Tingling in the hands and feet
* Hyperventilation (over breathing)
* Wanting to use the toilet more often
* Feeling sick
* Tight band across the chest area
* Tension headaches
* Dry mouth
Some Psychological symptoms (the thoughts we have) of anxiety
* Avoiding situations
* Feeling that people are looking at you and observing you
* Feeling as though things are speeding up/slowing down
* Feeling detached from your environment and people
* Feeling like wanting to run away and escape
* Feeling on edge and alert to everything around you
* Thinking that you may have a heart attack/be sick/faint
The most common behavioural we display when we are anxious is avoidance. Avoiding an anxiety provoking situation is only a short term solution and the anxiety often returns the next time that you face the same situation. Avoiding it again will reinforce the message that there is a perceived danger. Despite the fact there may not really be anything to harm you.