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What to do when your emotions seem to wave over you

My Stress

I feel stressed

Someone I know feels stressed

Stress types

Helping yourself

How to dissociate

A few words on Useful-stress

A few words on Excess-stress

A few words on Post-slow-stress fatigue

Therapists until RSPs qualify

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I feel stressed


What help can you get now?


Talk to others

Firstly, remember that feeling you have Excess-stress in your life is really common. Almost certainly someone you know does feel, or has felt, almost exactly the same trepidations that you do. If you can think of someone, talk to them about how they felt when they had Excess-stress and how they managed. Just talking can help tremendously.

They (and you) can read here about tackling your stress with the help of someone. But if there’s no one around at the moment, there’s still plenty you can do.

Ask yourself the questions in our stress test

Whether or not you know someone who has experienced similar periods of anxiety to the one you’re having now, allocate a time when you can ask the questions on our stress test. Do it now if you can or bookmark this page to come back to when you can have a few quiet moments to yourself.

Everyone experiences situations in which there is some stress attached on a daily basis.  Sometimes it’s easy to cope with, and becomes part of our daily routine; we don’t even question it.  At other times, we struggle to cope and don’t know what to do or where to go.

All this is normal.

The National institutes for clinical research into stress are here to help you find and create a better balance for you to get on with your daily life.

If you feel you have too much stress right now, there are many things you can do to help.  First of all, remember that having Excess-stress is a very common problem.  In fact, it’s the single biggest reason for people taking time off work and it’s often behind visits to doctors about a huge variety of symptoms – from aching necks to stomach disorders to depression.

But enough of that for the moment.  Right now, you need help with your stress. 

There are three main stages of stress.  All of them bring sets of emotions and sensations which are pervasive and, often, disorientating.  It helps you to understand and control your stress if you can identify which one you are in at the moment. 

There's an assessment you can do to help you do this - it takes about 15 minutes, so try to make a time when you can do it.  

Here are 4 steps to getting control over your stress - and your life underway:

Step 1: Take a break of 15 minutes or so to assess your stress.  If you can't do it right now, make a note on your phone or calendar so that you'll remember to come back and do it.  

Step 2: Follow the advice provided at the end of your assessment.

Step 3: Check out what types of stress can be predominant in your life you are in at the moment - and take some time to understand your stress. That will really help you to tackle it.

Step 4: Learn how to dissociate. This link will take you to some exercises that will help you see your own problems objectively; as if they were someone else's problems. This should help you see your problem from a different perspective.

By the spring of 2012, there will begin to be dedicated Registered Stress Practitioners trained to help people who are experiencing too much stress.  But until then, if you're feeling down, don't try to manage these feelings on your own - particularly if you seem to be getting them more and more often. 

Getting feelings similar to depression is normal and very common for people who have been through periods of anxiety - but the fact that they are normal doesn't take away from the fact that they can be frightening and disorientating.  There's more about feeling down after a period of Excess-stress here.

Don’t think you have to be contemplating suicide to read their websites or use their services – but do remember that if you contact them, they may have to prioritise if someone needing more urgent attention is waiting. 
From Australia dial 1800 198 313
From Guernsey, Jersey and the UK dial 08457 90 90 90.
From New Zealand dial 0800 726 666
From the Republic of Ireland dial 1850 60 90 90.
From the Isle of Man dial (01624) 663399

In Switzerland you can contact Die Dargebotene Hand by telephoning 143 or going to https://www.143.ch/web/.
Alternatively, you can go to Parspas or phone 0 27 321 21 21 210000000

In Australia, Lifeline provide a nationwide service available by dialling 13 11 14 anywhere.

If where you are isn't listed above – and you feel you'd like to talk to someone right away, The Befrienders website lists organisations in countries all over the world where understanding and support is available just by asking. If you are concerned that a friend, relative or colleague might self-harm – or just need support – please read this.

A comprehensive list of Canadian and American support will appear in our dedicated websites for these countries which will launch later in the year.  In the meantime, lots of contacts are available from these links. 


United States

Un site web dédié en Français sera lancé plus tard cette année pour les Francophones.  Si vous estimez que votre niveau de stress en est au stade où il a un effet déprimant sur vous – et que vous craignez que vos émotions soient potentiellement menaçantes pour votre bien-être, veuillez contacter les organismes suivants qui ont les compétences pour aider les personnes dans cette situation.

En France :
- par téléphone avec un réseau de 50 postes d’écoutes à travers la France
- sur internet, soit par messagerie électronique soit par chat

En Belgique :
Quelqu'un à qui parler dans l'anonymat  24h/24

Un numéro grat: 107