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  • Shelly P., RN

Stress and Mental Health. What can go wrong?

Updated: Aug 27



Stress and Mental Health



There is plenty of stress to go around for all of us today! Less stress is good and it’s necessary for mental health. There are different types of stress. It can also make mental health condition(s) worse. Ongoing stress can cause physical and mental health issues. It can be anger, sadness, worry, muscle pain, anxiety, less motivation and other symptoms.


If you don't lower stress, your life will be harder. Stress is different for all of us. Some people can handle more stress than others. It could be related to genetics, more social support, less responsibilities. Find out what kind of stress you’re dealing with and how to handle it. A stressor is a stressful event that can happen once, for a small amount of time and/or over a long period of time.


What stress can look like?


Regular stress related to work, school, family and other daily responsibilities


Stress brought about by a sudden negative change, such as losing a job, divorce or illness. Change is hard but negative change is more stressful


Traumatic stress from an event like a major accident, war, assault, or a natural disaster where people may be in danger of being seriously hurt or killed. People who experience traumatic stress often experience temporary symptoms of mental illness



Stress relief tips and tricks


Candle/Aromatherapy

Changing small things in your life can help. Make your environment better. Light a candle or incense. Make thing calm and re-focus your mind and body. There are lots of candles and incense you can pick from. Try to use a good essential oil like lavender, rose, neroli, sandalwood, ylang ylang or anything else you might love. These will help you feel better, more focused and remove stress naturally


Keep a stress journal or talk with friends

Both options are great because it can lower stress. We all have problems and these two ideas are some of the best to deal with problems, worry and issues. It won’t be easy at first but over time, you will probably see you feel less stressed. Talking or writing down your feelings gives you more power over them. When you know what’s wrong, you can start fixing them


Drink less caffeine

Everyone loves caffeine! There are all types - coffee, soda, energy drinks and more. Some people end up being very anxious and stressed out or jittery. You don’t need to stop it but to limit it. Instead of 3 cups of coffee, try two. See how you feel. Feeling anxious or wired can increase stress which makes it hard to focus and relax


It’s okay to say no

Sometimes you end up with a lot of stress because you say “yes” to everything and everyone. The reality is it’s ok to say no sometimes. Sometimes, say yes to doing less than what people ask and tell them why. People will respect and appreciate your honesty. If you’re stressed because you’re doing too much, it’s hard to relax and have fun


Start laughing more

Laughing helps improve your mood and immune system. It can help you be less judgmental about yourself and others. Small and big problems cause stress and that’s normal, but you need to take control of your emotions. Watch comedy movies, comedians online or in-person or tell jokes. Change what you’re doing – change how you feel


Stop procrastinating

Procrastination can cause stress and anxiety. Why? You might worry, stress, get upset because you left everything to the last minute. You waited until the last minute then you can’t find the paperwork you need, things you were supposed to bring to work or meeting. You’re under pressure because you didn’t complete what you need to on time. Focus on your tasks and set daily, weekly or monthly deadlines so it’s easy to stay on track


Stress relief and mental health affect each other. Manage your stress everyday so you can tackle small and big problems. It’s impossible to eliminate all stress from your life but using these tips can help. Less stress usually means better mental health control




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