Reducing the Effects of Stress in Everyday Life (Part 1)

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Generally speaking, stress is a response produced by our body when we are subjected to various types of demands, whether physically, mentally, or emotionally. Contrary to what most people believe, stress is not only associated with negative situations since even excessive positive emotions can result in “stress” as well. When something takes place – or is about to take place – which is producing stress in a person's body, it results in the release of certain chemicals into our bloodstream.

On the positive side, these chemicals can be used by the body to produce more energy or added strength. This is helpful when the cause of stress is something physical. But when you are dealing with emotional stress, it can have a negative effect on our body since there may be no outlet for releasing that extra energy and strength. Therefore, the bottom line is that stress results in various types of emotional or physical responses because each individual's body responds differently to the stimulus.

Types and Causes of Stress

As we know, stress is a part of everyday life. Whether you are at school, at the office, or just about anywhere – we all deal with people and the environment in ways that can create stress. So, the various types of stress are usually closely associated with their cause. And because our physical body is closely connected to our emotional and mental state, we tend to notice some connection to the effects when we begin to experience stress. This is also the reason why it is important to combat the cause of stress since it affects several vital aspects of our body, which can influence its function.

So for this week, we're just going to touch on a few of the various types of stress so we can then learn to manage each of these types of stress in future posts.

Here are some of the most common sources of stress that must be dealt with on an everyday basis:

Internal Stress: There are times when you constantly worry about certain events without having enough control to determine the outcome. Internal stress is also one of those kinds of stress that needs to be addressed quickly. Most of the source of internal stress is rooted our own mind, which can make it difficult to manage. Oftentimes, people suffering from internal stress subconsciously put themselves in stressful situations or feel stressed out about things that aren't necessarily stressful at all. In other words, many people just "worry" unnecessarily about things that never even happen. This is very common.

"Survival" Stress: This type of stress deals with real or potential danger, both physical and emotional. On the physical side, it can be prompted by the threat of an attack made by something that could potentially hurt you physically. An extreme example of this is the stress felt by people in combat (war) - which causes a severe "post-traumatic stress syndrome". Most of us are not under this kind of stress, but we can certainly feel the threat of physical harm if we live in a dangerous neighborhood or if we are exposed to dangerous living or work conditions. Emotional danger, such as financial stress - or even a loss of income (which could be partly physical as well) - or the stress caused in some "toxic" relationships - where emotional abuse can be significant - can be perceived as "survival" stress.

In response to our survival instincts, our body releases a burst of energy (adrenaline) which may be needed to respond quickly to the situation at hand, and to possibly confront it or escape from it.

Environmental Stress: This type of stress is our body's response to various activities or situations in the environment which could produce "pressure", either physically or mentally, such as consistently high levels of noise, extreme temperatures, high altitudes, or other adverse environmental conditions.

Work-Related Stress: Another common type of stress which affects many people is the stress associated with a job or career. This can be both acute (which means it is in response to an immediate, usually temporary situation - like a special project which demands significant overtime and intense focus) or chronic (which does not happen in an instant, but rather builds up over time). Part of the issue here can be a "life balance" issue, and part can be simply a "physical" issue related to fatigue. If you are spending too much time working, are being forced to deal with an excessive amount of work, or have a significant "imbalance" between work and non-work activities in your life, it can take a toll on your body - both physically and mentally.

Financial Stress: While mentioned as part of the "survival stress" section above, financial stress probably deserves mention separately since (a) it is so prevalent in our society today (especially in he economic climate we are currently experiencing) and (b) it can have significant negative effects on us.

This stress is the real or perceived pressure many people feel when they do not have the financial means to meet their basic needs or even their desired goals.

"Panic Attacks": A panic attack is a sudden episode of intense fear that triggers severe physical reactions when there is no real danger or apparent cause. Panic attacks can be very frightening. People who suffer from panic attacks might think they are losing control, having a heart attack or even dying.

Many people have just one or two panic attacks in their lifetimes, and the problem goes away, perhaps when a stressful situation ends. But if you've had recurrent, unexpected panic attacks and spent long periods in constant fear of another attack, you may have a condition called panic disorder.

Panic attacks were once dismissed as nerves or stress, but they're now recognized as a real medical condition. Although panic attacks can significantly affect your quality of life, treatment can be very effective.

So, what Now?

Use this information to start thinking about what kinds of stress are affecting you negatively. Next week on the BeHappy! Weekly Blog Post we'll start exploring ways to reduce the stress in your life and better manage the stress you can't eliminate.

And ...

If you haven't gotten the free EBook gift package I provide to visitors of BeHappy101.com - which includes the EBook called, When Anxiety Strikes (Stop Stressing Now), click here to get it FREE now.

Also, if you need or want immediate help with stress and anxiety, make sure to check out one of the best and most complete stress-management systems available today by clicking here.

Until then...

BeHappy! my friends


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