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How to manage the symptoms of stress overload

The mind and the body are wonderful creations. We were designed to react to danger in a way that would ensure survival, whether it be running away or eliminating the threat. Simple and primitive. The adrenaline rush died down and since life was simple, there was no “what if”. It was “this saber-toothed tiger paw is delicious”! This good stress allowed man to very quickly determine the best exit routes or how to catch prey. No in-depth analysis was required, that is, there was no conscious awareness, only automatic.

However, we no longer live like this, what happens when a threat is anticipated: the presentation, the interview, the discussion, the meeting, the traffic? The mind sees this as your life is under threat and all the fight or flight is going on inside of you. With the adrenaline pumping, you may experience body tremors, heat changes, rapid heartbeat, rapid breathing, and find it difficult to think clearly.

The triggering event happens, you feel panic and restlessness. Then it’s over and your internal dialogue becomes what’s wrong with you, how stupid, etc. But unlike our earlier ancestors, instead of the body going back to being calm and relaxed, the mind takes over: what if my boss thinks I’m an idiot? I will lose my job (or insert your takeout). Fear is running inside your head and now you start to ‘see’ things to back up your fears: did you see the way he ignored me this morning or didn’t they copy me on email? The wave of restlessness continues to build and your sleep is interrupted. Your mind becomes so preoccupied with “what if”, there is now no or no voice to tell you to shut up because you have the “proof” you need to back up your claims.

The following starts to happen –

Sense of dread:

You feel bad at the thought of going to work. Is this the day I’ll be fired? Even the weekends become less pleasant. At 3:00 pm on a Sunday, the churning in your stomach starts and you wonder what you can do to stop the frenzy inside, but it’s too late, the damage is already done, if only I had just talked more?


Do you feel tired all the time and not only physical tiredness but also mental daze? It is not surprising. Your sleep is disturbed. You never reach deep levels of sleep renewal because you are still on high alert within your mind. Everything is an effort.

To eat or not to eat:

Change in eating habits from not eating to eating junk. Failure to eat sends the body into starvation mode and therefore whatever is eaten will be stored as a fuel reserve because the mind simply does not know when food will be received again.

Your blood sugar level fluctuates and this, combined with your natural hormones, wreaks havoc on your mood.


It’s no fun being around you. You snap, lose your temper at the slight provocation. Why doesn’t anyone else feel your pain?

Without enjoyment of life:

The things that used to give you joy, no longer give you or you have lost interest. You have become introspective.

Fighting your feelings:

Ignoring feelings or denying them creates tension in the body. The more you resist, the more it persists. The more you deny the message that comes from your mind, the more pain it will cause you (you must not be able to hear the message, it is the philosophy of the mind).

What happens is that you look for a physical reason for the headaches, aches and pains rather than the emotional discomfort of not being able to disconnect. Or you get over the pain and feel even worse. It must have been the way I was sitting at my desk.

You need time off to see multiple doctors; There must be a reason for this tiredness/pain/discomfort.

What is happening, of course, is that you have forgotten to quit the job, you have forgotten to improve yourself: do you need to improve your skills or even improve your skills? Or maybe you just weren’t feeling well and your entire downward spiral stemmed from this.

You have allowed your mind to become caught up in the frenzy of fear. Your vision of life is distorted because you can only see things through pain, not reality.

The only thing you can control is your mood. Starts now. You have to learn to take back your control. What is the only thing you can think about without it causing you pain? when was the last time you laughed?

The steps to take initially are to relax your mind and body: hypnosis, mindfulness, or even a funny movie, something where your mind can focus on nothing or something (such as progressive muscle relaxation). Anything that stops you from feeling bad about yourself.

Second, treat yourself to a new haircut, buy a new item of clothing. Something to cheer you up.

Third, you need to talk to someone about how to handle stressful situations. Learn not to absorb negative energy and how to let things wash over you. This doesn’t have to hurt! It might be learning about body language and how your body position communicates with your mind.

Do this:

Put your body in an exaggeratedly depressed mode – shoulders hunched, face tense, and yell “I’m so happy” – doesn’t make sense, does it?

Now stand up and speak, shoulders back, face relaxed, and whisper “I’m so down”; again, the body language and the words do not match.

Put the words with the corresponding body language. How do you want to feel now? What should be different in you?

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