In the spirit of stress: part 2

In the first part of ‘in the spirit of stress’ we looked at a possible link between an increase of a general stress level and developments mainly in the financial sector (see In the spirit of stress: Part 1).

In today’s blog let us take a look at the symptoms of stress.

Without turning to the medical or engineering literature to tell us, how they define stress, let us look at it from an everyday observation point of view.

As such, stress can be observed to show one or more of the following symptoms (feel free to add your own observations):

  • People bump into each other on the streets: they don’t pay attention to what is going on around them.
  • A person is highly over-active; efficacy or efficiency? – Low.
  • A person may be totally blocked; standing on a cross-road, not knowing whether to go left, right, straight ahead or back again.
  • A person is under a lot of strain to keep their calm. All muscles seem to be frozen.
  • The sensory system is totally overwhelmed and cannot handle the input it is receiving.
  • Concentration level is low.
  • A person under stress often does not sleep too well.
  • On a more emotional level a person under a lot of stress often also experiences a lot of anxiety.

Clearly, being absent-minded, does not in itself pose a huge problem. And usually, it doesn’t produce a feeling of fear, which is closely related to stress. However, when one stresses through the station or rushes to the shop, whilst at the same time trying to focus on writing or reading something on your smartphone or have a talk on your mobile, that clearly results in your nervous system receiving an overdose of information. I.e. Stress.

As stress clearly overloads the whole (nervous and sensory) system, it makes sense to do anything to alleviate this overload before the body or the psyche react in a complete shutdown. For instance:

  • Try and reduce outside sensory input as much as possible. Give your body a soothing rest after a hectic day at work. If possible, take a daily walk in nature. Leave your mobile at home!
  • Do one thing at a time – with attention and focus.
  • Try and focus on the thoughts you cultivate. Cultivate friendly thoughts. This will soothe your system.
  • Try and align your thoughts with your speech. In other words: If we think one thing and voice something else, we are really telling a lie. Thus. Better to be still than tell even a friendly lie.
  • Try and cut down on alcohol, coffee, soft drinks. In fact, anything that is full of sugar, processed or in a can. When under stress, these items definitely are not of any help.

For more information on stress and how to manage stress keep an eye open for the upcoming e-book on the topic. I’ll have more information on the exact publishing date next week. OM.