What is Stress?

Well, it is primarily a physical response. When you are stressed, your body thinks…whoa…I am under attack and switch to

‘fight or flight’ mode. Hormones and chemicals are released in the body – adrenaline, cortisol, and norepinephrine – these prepare your body for physical action. We are able to, very quickly, respond to a dangerous situation and focus our attention on it completely. Haven’t you been in a situation where you felt the adrenaline rush in your body, especially in a situation of great shock or where you have to react very quickly?

When you are stressed continuously, I am sure you have felt your brain function minimizing. You know, when you say: “I am so stressed, I cannot even think straight”, that it can adversely affect your performance at work or at home or in relationships.  Increased stress levels have an impact on blood pressure, sugar levels and even one’s libido. Now that’s not good!!

What can cause Stress?

Life causes stress. Reading the news, social media, television – watching a war live on TV, crime statistics, money issues, unhappiness in the home, and so on.

Then you know about the big life stressors:

  • Death of a spouse
  • Divorce
  • Losing your job
  • Retirement
  • Moving to a new house

In a work situation, you could be stressed about working in a toxic work environment, you may be being bullied, micro-managed, ignored, isolated, be the target of racist and sexist behaviour – that is stressful!!

Types of Stress

Yes, there are ‘types’ of stress –simply put, eustress is good stress and distress is bad stress. In short, eustress can be an important motivator. It protects us from credible fear and from danger. It also raises our alertness.

“I have got butterflies in my stomach”!

Your senses are sharpened, you become focused, you are aware of your heart beating. You feel distanced from your comfort zone. Like just before your presentation, or meeting a deadline, or you are about to walk into the interview for your dream job!

I say good for you!! This is what it feels like to be alive.

I will work with you and help you to know just how to cope with this and get them to fly in a straight line.  This ‘feeling’ can keep you focused at the moment, it can give you that edge, it is actually positive energy flowing inside your body.

Distress conversely can de-motivate a person, it can cause an overreaction to a situation. It can lead to physical and mental complications, eventually wearing the body down and leading to illness, even in some cases, death.

When your short-term memory starts failing you, you gain weight, you lose weight, have blood pressure issues, insomnia, succumb to alcohol abuse to calm the nerves, etc., this is (di)stress manifesting in your body and it’s not good.

Life Coaching and Stress

As your Life Coach, I will work with you to create strategies and coping techniques to identify and reduce the impact of bad stress. I can’t make the problems/issues disappear, but I can help you look at things differently and help you gain a better perspective on the problems you are facing or how to deal with real-life situations that you are not able to escape from so that you manage how you react towards them. For instance:

  • Our session could focus on time management – are you managing your time effectively? Are you overwhelmed? Plus…Is procrastination your thing?
  • Our session could also focus on balance in your life. Is there a semblance of balance in your life, or do you feel that you are out of control? Has working from home ironically taken you away from family and loved ones?
  • Do your fears grip you in such a way that you feel paralyzed? You feel frozen. You struggle to make decisions. Does fear impact your self-confidence and cause you stress?
  • In terms of knowing yourself, what are those triggers in your life?  How do you respond to situations, to people, to partners? These triggers can be identified and then unlearnt, yes unlearnt. (This is an important subject and one which will be dealt with in my next blog – so look out for it).
  • Do you know how much breathing properly and effectively can assist you when you are in a panic situation?
  • Me time! How much time do you spend with yourself, exploring your thoughts and feelings about things in order to gain a better understanding of them? A quiet time maybe? Do you ever give yourself that space?
  • Are you stressed about where you are in life, that there is more to you, more than you can contribute, more that you want to achieve, yet you feel you are a victim of your own story in life? You and your thoughts, the way you think about things is actually your own worst enemy!

With Life Coaching, I can help you take control and create a happier life.  This can happen just by changing the way we view our world and ourselves, becoming more self-aware, and looking at the world through new lenses. You will go inward and discover things about yourself by enhancing your self-awareness, knowing what triggers you and what your ‘default mode’ is!

You can’t change what happens to you or around you, but you have an absolute choice in the matter of how you respond to it all.