The beginning of April marks the start of Stress Awareness Month. Stress is something we feel very strongly about here at Scentered as it is a very real and dominating feeling that is present in most of our everyday lives. While stress stems from abstract emotions, feelings and situations, it can have very real physical symptoms and side effects. Not to mention the detrimental effect it can have on our mental wellbeing, immune system, behaviour and thinking ability. So how can you tell if you’re actually stressed?
How do I know if I’m overworked or stressed?
Being aware of the fact you are stressed is one of the first steps in overcoming it. There are certain tell-tell signs that you experience that stem from stress. Some are more subtle than others...
1. Insomnia and sleepless nights
Being stressed puts our body in constant fight or flight mode. Stress tricks our body into thinking we are in imminent danger. As a result, you will have an increased heart rate and increased levels of adrenaline pumping through your body. Both of which make it hard for us to catch those all important Z’s. So if you find yourself struggling to switch off at bedtime, it may be time to start a de-stressing bedtime ritual.
2. Frequent colds and infections
Being stressed can have just as many physical symptoms as it does emotional symptoms, this includes the suppression of your immune system. If you are frequently stressed you may find you are succumbing to colds and infections far more frequently than you usually would. This is definitely one to look out for as it can leave you feeling even more run down, tired and therefore… stressed.
3. Change in appetite and eating habits
We’ve all heard of stress eating, but did you know there is such a thing as stress fasting? If you have noticed a change in your appetite or eating habits, whether that is eating more or less, it could be a result of stress. For some, food can be a comfort during times of stress, and for others, controlling food intake can be a way of taking control during uncertain times. Neither of which are good!
4. Becoming easily agitated, frustrated, and moody
When you are stressed, you are often feeling tired and overwhelmed. This can result in feelings of frustrations, agitation and moodiness where you might otherwise feel calm and content. For example, if you find yourself getting upset and angry over the little things like slow traffic lights, burnt dinner, lagging internet connection … and spilt milk, stress may be the culprit.
5. Inability to focus
Stress can often be a result of being overworked due to an ever growing ‘to do list’. If you find yourself jumping from one task to the other, attempting to complete them all against the clock but struggling to cross anything off, it could be the cause and symptom of stress.
6. Teeth grinding
Grinding your teeth is one of the symptoms of stress that can be hard to spot in yourself. It is often done during the night or subconsciously. Do you wake up with an achy jaw? Is your jaw tensed as you’re reading this?
7. Feeling lonely whilst avoiding socialising
When you feel stressed, socialising is often the last thing on your mind. When you are feeling overworked, calling your bestie for a good chinwag is the last thing on your agenda. This can result in feeling lonely, distanced and isolated, yet still reluctant to make social contact. It is a vicious cycle that ultimately starts with stress.
If you have read this list of symptoms and relate, you may have just answered your question, “am I stressed?”. With Stress Awareness Month ahead of you, we are here to help you and recommend you de-stress aromatherapy techniques. Why not start with our De-Stress Aromatherapy Range.
For more information on stress and how you can overcome it, you can visit our blog. We have helpful blog posts such as ‘Ultimate Relaxation Comes From a Wellbeing Ritual’, and ‘How to Stop Waking Up Feeling Tired’. Watch this space for more!