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Mental Health and Wellbeing


Everyone will feel some form of stress during their life and some people even find it motivating to help them achieve their goals, however if stress is affecting your life negatively, there are some things that might help.

Causes of Stress

Stress is a reaction to mental or emotional pressure and can often feel like losing control over something; however there may not always be an obvious cause.

Physical Symptoms

Someone who is feeling stress might experience:

  • Headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Muscle tension or pain
  • Stomach problems
  • Faster heartbeat
  • Chest pain
  • Sexual problems

Mental Symptoms

Mental symptoms of someone experiencing stress might include:

  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Struggling to make decisions
  • Feeling overwhelmed
  • Constantly worrying
  • Being forgetful

Changes to behaviour

Someone who is feeling stressed may also experience:

  • Being irritable or snappy
  • Sleeping too much or too little
  • Eating too much or too little
  • Avoiding certain places or people
  • Drinking, smoking or using drugs

Things you can do to help with stress

If you are stressed the first step to feeling better is to identify the cause, whether it is personal or professional. The NHS has provided 10 stress busting tips from Professor Cary Copper, an occupational health expert at the University of Lancaster.

  • Be active. Exercise is not going to make stress disappear but it can help to reduce some of the emotional build up, clearing the mind and thoughts.
  • Take control. There is a solution to every problem and tackling it will help. Losing control can be a stressful experience, so by tackling that problem and taking back the control, a person can empower themselves. 
  • Work smarter, not harder. Work smarter by prioritising the tasks that will make a real difference. Accept that you might not be able to get everything you want done, but as long as you can manage the most important tasks, things are getting better.
  • Avoid unhealthy habits. Don’t rely on addictive proprieties such as alcohol, caffeine or smoking to help you cope. These substances will not solve the problems long term and can often lead to new issues.
  • Help other people. Try to volunteer to help others in your community, there is evidence to show that people who help others become more resilient. If you can’t volunteer, try to do a little favour for someone every day, a little help goes a long way. 
  • Challenge yourself. Set yourself new and achievable goals and challenges, either in your personal or professional life. Look at learning a new language or try a new sport; actions like this can help to build confidence and reduce stress.
  • Have some me time. Try to make sure that you are putting enough time to one side for yourself. Having some time to yourself is important in keeping a healthy work life balance, open for socialisation and relaxation.
  • Connect with people. Having a good support network of friends, family and even work colleagues and help to ease your troubles and see things in a different light. Activities with others can help people to relax and this can help reduce stress.
  • Try to think positively. Look for the positive things going on in your life and find the things that you are grateful for. At the end of every day, try to write down 3 different things that you think went well that day or that you are grateful for.
  • Accept the things that you can’t change. Change is difficult and trying to change a situation isn’t always possible. Try to concentrate on the things that you can control. It might not be easy but it can help to ease your mind knowing that you are doing everything you can to make it better for yourself.

Getting help for Stress

Sometimes strees can easily overpower someone and incases like that support is available when needed. Most GPs and mental health support teams have free psychological therapies such as cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT) to help those who may be feeling overwhelmed by stress.