This page explores how we can understand stress and recognise our own personal warning signs, and ways we can deal with stress to help lead happier and more fulfilling lives.
Stress can have a profound effect on someone’s thoughts, feelings and behaviour.
The act of taking control and finding a solution that specifically meets your needs is in itself empowering. Try to identify those things that you can control and concentrate on dealing with them.
Making time to unwind and enjoy life is an important part of improving and maintaining positive wellbeing.
It not only relieves stress and anxiety, but also lowers blood pressure, relieves chronic pain, and improves your immune and cardiovascular systems.
The short self-study module below covers how to manage stress and provides you with tasks to implement right away to help you get started.
• Be open and honest with yourself
• Treat yourself with kindness and respect
• Be present
Performance increases with pressure and we all need some pressure to feel motivated. It’s easy to push ourselves so that we work to and beyond our capacity. Especially if everyone around us seems to be doing more.
When working in a healthy environment, we can cope with short periods of increased performance. However, if a heavy workload is sustained it can lead to physical and emotional symptoms such as stress.
If we work beyond our fatigue point, our performance will drop and ‘negative stress’ can affect us. We begin to feel overwhelmed, we procrastinate, we can’t make decisions and can even become sick.
ACT NOW: If there's a certain task that is causing you to feel stressed, take a couple of minutes to think about where you see yourself now. Consider where you can receive support from in order to get to where you would like to be.
ACT NOW: Think back to a stressful situation you have been in recently. Consider how sharing tasks and agreeing priorities may have helped the situation. Could any tasks be temporarily put on hold in order to concentrate on other priorities?
When you are under a lot of pressure, the act of taking control and finding a solution that specifically meets your needs is empowering.
If you are feeling overwhelmed and cannot see a solution, try listing all the things you need to do and then prioritise them.
ACT NOW: Try making a list of the things you need to do right now. Are there any tasks you can ask someone else to take on?
ACT NOW: Come back to your list and choose one task you are avoiding or finding the most stressful. What advice you would give someone else? Write a plan for this task using small, easy steps.
Focus on dealing with one task at a time and avoid the temptation to race ahead and try to solve everything at once. By breaking your problems down, they will feel much more manageable.
ACT NOW: Use your journey home from work to think through the day and try to ‘let go’ of it.
Make your work environment as comfortable as you can. Raise problems with your manager where appropriate and use time management techniques.