As we enter the most stressful time of the year, and continue to operate within an ongoing pandemic, it’s important to stay informed on how to manage and spot the signs of stress.
Stress is generally defined by how the brain and body respond to a challenge–be it a mid-term paper, a significant life change, or a sudden physical demand. Stress plays an important role in helping organisms adapt and overcome external challenges, but when it gets in the way of daily life, it can lead to serious health consequences including insomnia, anxiety, and depression.
That’s why it’s important to recognize the mental and physical signs of excessive stress, so that you can prevent the long-term health consequences. The symptoms of stress can present themselves physically, mentally, or behaviorally. These symptoms include:
Once you’ve noticed a stress symptom, use a relaxation method to refocus. This can include practicing mindful breathing, listening to calming music, or taking time to meditate. Getting enough sleep, eating nutritious meals, and engaging in physical activity will also help lower your stress levels and improve your overall health.
Check out these resources for more information on stress and for tips on stress management:
Articles and Toolkits on Stress and Stress Management
- USDA Toolkit: Resources for Stress Management (usda.gov)
- CDC Resource Guide: Stress | Workplace Health Resources | Tools and Resources | Workplace Health Promotion | CDC