With it being stress awareness month, last week we looked at signs of stress in horses. This week we are looking at signs of stress in humans since our own health is so important and a lot of us are guilty of overlooking our own needs and wellbeing for our horses instead. If we are run down and become ill it makes it a lot harder to be able to look after our horses or even spend time with them, which is why staying on top of our health is so important.
Signs of stress manifest in so many ways for individuals, so again take note of what is normal for you, and if you feel any different and are concerned about it, always talk to your GP or NHS24. Some physical signs can be difficulty breathing, sleep problems, fatigue, muscle aches or headaches, feeling sick, dizzy or fainting. Stress can make you feel as though you can’t switch off from anything, a sense of dread, unable to enjoy things you usually would or irritable, angry and overwhelmed.
Stress can cause people to act differently too. If you’ve noticed you find it hard to make decisions, are unable to concentrate, snap at people, clench your jaw or either are unable to remember things or your memory feels slower than usual then you may be experiencing stress even subconsciously. Causes of stress can vary, with some causes being situations you feel you have no control of, a big life change, having responsibilities you feel are overwhelming or maybe you don’t have enough work, activities or change in your life and are stuck in a rut.
To help relieve stress it is important to try and find the cause first so you can try to alleviate it – talk to a boss if you feel as though you have too much responsibility at work or take up a hobby you’ve always wanted to try. Spend more time with family and friends doing things you enjoy or go visit a place you’re familiar with and have good memories at. Sometimes a good hack with friends or going to a show to watch can be all you need to get you out of the stressful situation and try to relax for a while.
ECLAT HQ’s TOP TIPS
If you think you could be suffering from stress either consciously or subconsciously, reach out to a GP if you are struggling. Talk to friends or family who you trust and make plans to do things you enjoy.
Make sure you take enough ‘you time’ and don’t feel guilty if you just want to crash out on the sofa and watch TV instead of going out – you’ve got to take care of yourself first.
Research stress online if you are unsure or need more information about it or ways to cope with it. www.mind.org.uk is a useful website or chat to a trained professional who may be able to help – Pauline Kidd provides free 15-minute chats to see if she can help or can pass you onto another professional that may be able to help.