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14 WARNING Signs that You’re Way Too Stressed

14 WARNING Signs that You’re Way Too Stressed

Effective stress management is a crucial skill that every individual needs to possess nowadays given that stress has become so rampant. Although stress is not entirely detrimental and can even be helpful and motivating at moderate levels, chronic exposure to high levels of stress can lead to numerous mental, physical, and emotional conditions. Some of the most common problems include hypertension, heart attacks, depression, anxiety, accelerated aging, and even death.

With the knowledge that stress can bring about harm came the outpouring of information on how to deal with it effectively. As a matter of fact, stress management information is readily available to anyone, often without any cost.

Dealing with stress positively and effectively is not as difficult as many people imagine. The majority of stress-relief methods or stress management techniques are quite straightforward and require nothing more than common sense. The problem that people are facing these days is the inability to recognize that one’s stress levels are already out of hand.

Importance of Recognizing Stress Symptoms

It’s important to learn how to recognize when your stress levels are actually getting out of control. Stress is deceptive. It has its way of creeping up on you so you get used to it and you start to feel a certain sense of familiarity with it. If you are not mindful of your body, you may just be surprised to see that it has already taken its toll on you and has already caused a great deal of harm.

For instance, people who are constantly exposed to high levels of stress may think that they have grown accustomed to the pressure and high surge of adrenaline, but the truth is, there is no such thing as getting used to stress. When you thrive on stress, it’s just difficult for you to discern the symptoms of stress; but this does not mean that your body is not responding to stress. Eventually, something within you will malfunction.

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It is important to recognize stress before it actually develops into a serious health problem. And while stress affects different people in many different ways, there are certain factors and symptoms that are common among the general population.

Symptoms of Uncontrolled Stress

Like in any medical condition, the starting point towards the resolution of the problem that is stress is symptom recognition. Stress is your body’s way of protecting you; it is a normal physiological response to any threatening event that comes your way. But beyond a certain point, stress stops being helpful and starts causing harm to your health and life in general. Below are some of the common warning signs and symptoms of too much or uncontrolled stress. If you seem to be experiencing many of the symptoms listed, then it likely indicates that you are not coping with the stress in your life effectively.

Cognitive Symptoms.

Cognitive symptoms refer to problems that have anything to do with brain processes like thinking, attention, perception, memory, reasoning, and problem solving. The most commonly observed cognitive symptoms of poorly managed stress are as follows:

  • Memory problems

  • Decreased concentration abilities

  • Poor decision-making

  • Negativity

  • Unreasonable anxiety

Emotional Symptoms.

Emotional symptoms are those symptoms that are associated with a person’s feelings. Emotional changes can be normal, temporary responses to events; however, disproportionate, extreme, persistent, or unstable emotional reactions may indicate a serious issue. In stress, the following emotional symptoms can indicate stress overload:

  • Extreme mood swings

  • Irritability

  • Constant state of agitation

  • Depression

Physical Symptoms.

Physical symptoms are basically your body’s physical manifestations. They are often characterized by pain, are characterized by discomfort, or are visually observable. The most common physical indicators of too much stress are the following symptoms:

  • Severe headaches or migraines

  • Backaches

  • Chest discomfort

  • GI disturbances

  • Sleep pattern changes

The health problems brought about by uncontrolled stress do not develop overnight. Be wary of these little red flags if you don’t want to find yourself suffering some major health issue.

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Last Updated on March 13, 2019

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

Have you gotten into a rut before? Or are you in a rut right now?

You know you’re in a rut when you run out of ideas and inspiration. I personally see a rut as a productivity vacuum. It might very well be a reason why you aren’t getting results. Even as you spend more time on your work, you can’t seem to get anything constructive done. While I’m normally productive, I get into occasional ruts (especially when I’ve been working back-to-back without rest). During those times, I can spend an entire day in front of the computer and get nothing done. It can be quite frustrating.

Over time, I have tried and found several methods that are helpful to pull me out of a rut. If you experience ruts too, whether as a working professional, a writer, a blogger, a student or other work, you will find these useful. Here are 12 of my personal tips to get out of ruts:

1. Work on the small tasks.

When you are in a rut, tackle it by starting small. Clear away your smaller tasks which have been piling up. Reply to your emails, organize your documents, declutter your work space, and reply to private messages.

Whenever I finish doing that, I generate a positive momentum which I bring forward to my work.

2. Take a break from your work desk.

Get yourself away from your desk and go take a walk. Go to the washroom, walk around the office, go out and get a snack.

Your mind is too bogged down and needs some airing. Sometimes I get new ideas right after I walk away from my computer.

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3. Upgrade yourself

Take the down time to upgrade yourself. Go to a seminar. Read up on new materials (#7). Pick up a new language. Or any of the 42 ways here to improve yourself.

The modern computer uses different typefaces because Steve Jobs dropped in on a calligraphy class back in college. How’s that for inspiration?

4. Talk to a friend.

Talk to someone and get your mind off work for a while.

Talk about anything, from casual chatting to a deep conversation about something you really care about. You will be surprised at how the short encounter can be rejuvenating in its own way.

5. Forget about trying to be perfect.

If you are in a rut, the last thing you want to do is step on your own toes with perfectionist tendencies.

Just start small. Do what you can, at your own pace. Let yourself make mistakes.

Soon, a little trickle of inspiration will come. And then it’ll build up with more trickles. Before you know it, you have a whole stream of ideas.

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6. Paint a vision to work towards.

If you are continuously getting in a rut with your work, maybe there’s no vision inspiring you to move forward.

Think about why you are doing this, and what you are doing it for. What is the end vision in mind?

Make it as vivid as possible. Make sure it’s a vision that inspires you and use that to trigger you to action.

7. Read a book (or blog).

The things we read are like food to our brain. If you are out of ideas, it’s time to feed your brain with great materials.

Here’s a list of 40 books you can start off with. Stock your browser with only the feeds of high quality blogs, such as Lifehack.org, DumbLittleMan, Seth Godin’s Blog, Tim Ferris’ Blog, Zen Habits or The Personal Excellence Blog.

Check out the best selling books; those are generally packed with great wisdom.

8. Have a quick nap.

If you are at home, take a quick nap for about 20-30 minutes. This clears up your mind and gives you a quick boost. Nothing quite like starting off on a fresh start after catching up on sleep.

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9. Remember why you are doing this.

Sometimes we lose sight of why we do what we do, and after a while we become jaded. A quick refresher on why you even started on this project will help.

What were you thinking when you thought of doing this? Retrace your thoughts back to that moment. Recall why you are doing this. Then reconnect with your muse.

10. Find some competition.

Nothing quite like healthy competition to spur us forward. If you are out of ideas, then check up on what people are doing in your space.

Colleagues at work, competitors in the industry, competitors’ products and websites, networking conventions.. you get the drill.

11. Go exercise.

Since you are not making headway at work, might as well spend the time shaping yourself up.

Sometimes we work so much that we neglect our health and fitness. Go jog, swim, cycle, whichever exercise you prefer.

As you improve your physical health, your mental health will improve, too. The different facets of ourselves are all interlinked.

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Here’re 15 Tips to Restart the Exercise Habit (and How to Keep It).

12. Take a good break.

Ruts are usually signs that you have been working too long and too hard. It’s time to get a break.

Beyond the quick tips above, arrange for a 1-day or 2-days of break from your work. Don’t check your (work) emails or do anything work-related. Relax and do your favorite activities. You will return to your work recharged and ready to start.

Contrary to popular belief, the world will not end from taking a break from your work. In fact, you will be much more ready to make an impact after proper rest. My best ideas and inspiration always hit me whenever I’m away from my work.

Take a look at this to learn the importance of rest: The Importance of Scheduling Downtime

More Resources About Getting out of a Rut

Featured photo credit: Joshua Earle via unsplash.com

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