We live in a very fast-paced technology-ridden environment bombarded with more bits of information that we need. Our workdays are packed and our weekends just as busy, if not busier. We can’t seem to remember the last time we had some leisure time, an entire hour for ourselves with nothing to do.
A country, a company or the economy may thrive under these conditions. But from an evolutionary point of view, humans are not build to spend 8 hours+ at a desk. These conditions create a lot of pressure for people everywhere trying to make a living. And that translates into stress more often than not.
Our brains were wired to handle short-term stress through the fight or flight response mechanism. But when we’re going through a prolonged state of tension, our bodies won’t be able to reset to our default state. That means very bad news for our mental and physical health and well-being.
Here are 5 sure ways chronic stress can impair your performance at work and at home.
1. Disturbed sleeping patterns
If you notice the slightest change in your sleep routine, then this is a clear sign that something’s up. Acute stress, tension or anxiety will usually keep you up at night, tossing and turning. There are cases when we may feel the need to oversleep. That’s our body’s way of telling us we should slow down and try to relax more.
2. Bad eating habits
A healthy and balanced person won’t crave bad foods like highly processed food, junk food, sweets or sweet beverages. Lack of quality sleep and stress can really wreak havoc on our eating patterns. A nourishing and healthy meal will always reflect our mood and overall state of mind.
Being always irritated is yet another indicator of major stress. We all have our bad days and get annoyed by a coworker every once in a while. But being constantly on the verge of a nervous breakdown is a big red flag. If we usually get upset over trifles, it’s pretty clear we need to look for ways to unwind.
4. Substance abuse
If you are more inclined to smoke that tenth cigarette although you know you shouldn’t, you are definitely under stress. Drug addiction or any kind of addiction means you are off balance drowning your sorrow and stress in whatever gives you instant relief. But we all know how addiction works.
5. Lack of energy
Being lethargic is another alarm signal. If you feel you lack the drive or energy to do anything, then you are most likely consumed by stress and possibly overthinking. You find it difficult to get out of bed or have the social life you used to. Too much turbulence can take its toll on you and leave you feeling low and without purpose.
Don’t give in. There are natural methods you can adopt that will help you get on track such as exercising or meditation. Know that worrying and stressing out are very harmful and damaging and that taking care of you is a priority. Please share!