We live in a world that is full of anxiety and stress. In fact, many doctors will tell you that a great deal of ailments and sicknesses are caused by an overload of chronic stress. From finances to health to relationships, there seems to always be a stressor knocking at our door. If you are allowing stressor after stressor to build in your life without treating it, it could lead to a nervous breakdown.
Signs of chronic stress
The first sign that you are carrying chronic stress is a change in your behavior or thought life. If you are normally an upbeat, caring, thoughtful, and happy person, but have been displaying characteristics and emotions like selfishness, cruelty, bitterness, anger, fatigue, etc., then you are probably carrying a load of stress that is bringing you down. You might not even notice that your attitude and behavior is changing. It may be a loved one or friend that points out your moodiness or lack of drive.
For example, if a man’s finances have been off for the past few months and he has been stressing over it, he might not be sleeping well at night, overeating because food makes him feel better, or lashing out at his kids because the stress has caused him to have a short fuse. The financial stress and strain is wearing on this man little by little and if he does not do something to relieve or eliminate the stress, he could be headed for a nervous breakdown.
Other signs of stress or that you are headed for a breakdown include:
- Emotional outbursts
- Severe depression
- Victim mentality
- Loss or gain of weight
- Constant guilty feelings
Ways to relieve stress
It is important to understand how you can relieve and/or eliminate your stress. You really can’t avoid stress, because it pops up periodically whether at work, at home, or anywhere! The key is to find out what stress relievers work for you and use them on a regular basis. Here are some common stress busters that you can try:
Deep breathing/meditation/yoga. All three of these fall into the same category. There are many people who can attest to the fact that deep breathing, meditation, and yoga are great stress busters. What is great about deep breathing and yoga is that you can do these exercises each day and only spend about 15 minutes per day doing such to experience stress relief. Find a quiet place to sit and breathe deeply and let go of cares, concerns, and stress. Think happy thoughts or as in meditation, simply concentrate on the inhale and exhale. You will notice the stress leaving your body. Yoga is a great form of exercise and a stress reliever. You can do yoga classes or do it in the privacy of your own home. Commit to these stress busters regularly for less stress and happier living.
Exercise. Many people find that regular exercise helps them de-stress and feel better emotionally and physically. You can take a brisk walk, go jogging, play tennis, disc golf, golf, hit the gym, or any other sport or exercise regimen that appeals to you. If you exercise 3 to 5 times per week, you are not only de-stressing, but also burning calories and strengthening your body.
See a therapist. If you are having a rather difficult time with stressors, such as relationship problems, divorce, extreme anxiety and fear, depression, etc., consider seeing a counselor to learn how to cope with the root issues that are stressing you out. Sometimes people just need a little bit of insight and encouragement to get through the rough patches and therapists are well equipped to help.
If you, or a loved one, is struggling with chronic stress and is headed for a nervous breakdown, rest assured that help is available. Talk to a professional or at the very least, a close friend or family member about what you can do to change the situation and cope with the stressors. Know that if you or someone close to you has a nervous breakdown, that he or she does not have a mental illness. A nervous breakdown is a temporary condition that can be relieved with encouragement, support, and some form of treatment. Life can resume back to normal and the person can be happy and free once again.
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