How does stress affect you?

We all encounter stressful situations in our day-to-day lives; that’s completely normal. Getting the kids ready for school in the morning, your commute to work, giving a presentation to your bosses – these situations and many more are potential stressors that we have to face. But how can you tell when the levels of stress in your life have become too much?

Being able to spot the symptoms of severe stress can help to prevent it from leading to more serious issues that impact on your health as well as your personal and professional life. Approximately 70 million workdays are lost each year in the UK due to mental health, including stress-related conditions.

Symptoms of stress

Your body has many subtle ways of letting you know it’s experiencing too much stress. Becoming attuned to the way your body normally feels can help you to spot these warning signs early. Mindfulness meditation is becoming a popular workplace practice to help employees notice and prevent the effects of stress.

Here are a few symptoms to look out for:

  • Headaches
  • Chest pain
  • Fatigue
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Irritability
  • Difficulty staying focused
  • Lack of motivation

Knock-on effects of stress

Experiencing stress over a prolonged period, can result in health problems and impact your performance at work. Stress can lead to mental health conditions, such as depression and anxiety, and can even lead to serious physical health conditions, causing high blood pressure and heart problems in severe cases.

If stress is causing sleep difficulties, then it will be harder to concentrate at work, resulting in a decline in productivity. This can cause a snowball effect since a lack of productivity gives you even more to stress about if you’re not getting enough work done. Any health problems that arise from stress could also force you to take days off work, meaning more work missed.

If you’re noticing symptoms of stress, take some time to look after yourself and take a break. Meditate, exercise, and spend time doing the things you love. Contact me at sarah@sarah-j.com for more information on how to do this!