Stress and Work Related Stress in Bagshot, Surrey and Surbiton
We will all experience stress at some point in our lives, for a number of different reasons. In small doses, stress can be a motivator - but it can also be unpleasant. When stress builds, it can be overwhelming. Over time it can prevent a person from carrying out everyday tasks, affecting both mental and physical health.
A 2018 study by the Mental Health Foundation found that 74% of adults felt so stressed at some point over the previous year that they felt overwhelmed and unable to cope.
Stress is at heart a physical reaction of the sympathetic nervous system. When our body perceives there is a threat, it reacts with a 'fight or flight' response, producing larger amounts of hormones like cortisol and adrenaline. While the alertness and rush of energy this can provide is useful in a serious crisis and likely served us well historically, it's often not so helpful with most modern daily stressors.
It’s easy to think the feeling will pass or that everyone feels that way, but pushing it aside and not dealing with it will only make you feel worse. Of course, everyone will have bad days, where they feel tired and unmotivated. But carrying these emotions around with you every day will only overwhelm you. Feeling stressed for a prolonged period of time can greatly affect your life, physically and mentally.
Work related Stress
We spend a lot of time at work; it supports society, gives structure and purpose to life, keeps the body and brain occupied and promotes a sense of satisfaction. When you enjoy your job, it can provide happiness and fulfilment. When work is causing you stress and unhappiness, however, it can take over your life.
According to HSE, the Health and Safety Executive:
There were more than 595,000 reported cases of work-related stress, depression or anxiety in the UK in 2017/18. This equated to 15.4 million working days being lost as a result of these conditions.
When you’re in the thick of stress, it can feel like you’re constantly paddling to keep your head above water. This is incredibly draining and can make you feel like you’re not coping with the demands of your job.
If you think you are suffering from work-related stress, it is important you seek help. Depending on the cause of your stress, you may need to speak to a colleague, manager or HR department. In the case of bullying or harassment, there are often procedures in place that will support you.
Work-related stress can also lead to sleep problems and feeling sad. It can impact your social life and you may pick up bad habits as a way of coping, such as drinking, smoking and over or undereating. It’s important you recognise these signs and know that it is OK to seek help.
Many of us believe we can handle whatever life throws at us, but it’s OK to need a helping hand sometimes. While we can often find support from friends and family, sometimes we need to talk to a professional, like a counsellor.
Counselling aims to get to the cause of your stress. When you’re in the midst of the situation, it can be hard to think clearly. Talking to a professional in a private, non-judgemental setting, about the difficulties you’re experiencing can help you understand what may be causing the stress and the steps you can take to overcome it.
When you’ve kept your problems close to your chest, talking to a neutral party can often result in a sense of relief. After identifying what is causing the problem, you can work with the counsellor to acknowledge your own stress triggers and discuss coping methods.
The video below gives an idea of how stress impacts us;