How to... have conversations about stress

Understanding Stress

Stress is the body’s reaction to feeling threatened or under pressure. It is very common and can be motivating to help us achieve things in our daily life, helping us meet the demands of home, work and family. But too much stress can affect our mood, body and relationships, especially when it feels out of our control. It can cause anxiety, irritability and affect our self-esteem. 

Things to consider

Useful Questions

In the midst of feeling stressed it can be difficult to see what is causing the stress. This simple question will help someone stop and think

If a stressful disposition is not normal considering what has changed that may be the cause of the stress is helpful

Stress can be about people and environment as well as workload

Stress can arise because of something we are not in control of outside ourselves. But often stress comes from our internal thoughts. Looking at both can help identify the root causes of the stress to work on those rather than the symptoms

Stress isn’t just caused by something that is currently happening. Stress can also be cause by worrying about things that may happen

A sense of responsibility, if too strong, can lead to stress, especially if this is related to something outside of your control

Making sure we get enough of what energises us is crucial in avoiding becoming overwhelmed or stressed

When we are continually using skills that do not come naturally to us we are using more energy than we might normally. If this continues for a prolonged period this can lead to stress. By limiting the amount of work in this area and instead getting help from others with that natural ability can help reduce stress

We have a tendency to harbour things we are anxious about. There can be many things lurking around us that secretly we are fearful of but don’t necessarily want to share. In the long run, if these are not dealt with, stress will develop

Isolation can drive stress. We are human beings designed to be in relationship with others. In modern society, it is easy, despite all it’s connectedness. to feel isolated! What could you do, just one step, to help you feel less isolated?

Although stress has a tendency to build overtime, we each have our own triggers. If we are ‘coping’ with our current life situation, these triggers if they appear at the wrong moment can cause stress levels to rise beyond a healthy state. Minimising day to day stress is of course the best option, but also being aware of what can trigger us can help us not react, or try to mitigate the effect

Videos on Stress

Useful Reading & Resources on Stress