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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

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A few words on Excess-stress

It is important to monitor your stress levels so that you can quickly identify when useful stress becomes Excess-stress.

Excess-stress is encountered by almost everyone, and dealing with it is not necessarily difficult.

Most people who find themselves adversely affected by Excess-stress do so because they haven't identified the condition early enough.

Although there are a number of ways in which you can prevent yourself having Excess-stress often, it can't always be avoided because, for most of us, the things that stress us tend to be triggered from outside and we have little control over how and when they occur.  For example, we may suddenly find ourselves having to do more work than we can easily cope with, due to a colleague being ill. 

Although it isn't possible for us to control when outside triggers occur or the degree to which they initially make us anxious, there are ways in which we can teach ourselves to deal with these situations in a more constructive way.

Understanding that our anxiety occurs as a result of our beliefs about situations, rather than the situations themselves is an important first step.  This is good news as we can learn how to challenge and manage our own beliefs, whereas changing external factors is often impossible.

To begin using this to your advantage, start to notice any irrational or unhealthy negative beliefs you may have when you feel anxious, and challenge them.  For example - is it rational to expect others to do things the way you want them to, simply because that's the way you'd like the world to function?  Is it really true that if you make a mistake, everyone will judge you negatively forever, forgetting all your positive traits?  Would the world really end if you had an unsuccessful interview or failed an exam or a driving test?  In most situations such as these, the ability to adapt and be flexible can be an enormous advantage.

Ways in which you can maximise your ability to cope with things that stress you include taking exercise regularly and frequently, monitoring the amount of sleep you get, eating healthily and allocating specific times in the day and in the week where you have down-time or you do things which are relatively unimportant, yet satisfying.  

After prolonged periods of Excess-stress, many people enter a stage called Post-slow-stress fatigue.  Usually gradually, but sometimes very suddenly after a tearful breakdown, we suddenly stop being anxious all the time and show signs of exhaustion and, often, have depressive thoughts. 

For more about Post-slow-stress fatigue (P-s-s f) see here. 

For more about Useful-stress see here.