According to a survey by the Mental Health Foundation, 81 per cent of women in the UK have felt so stressed recently that they’ve been overwhelmed or unable to cope.
Stress is a part of all our lives so how can we manage it better?
Psychologist and psychotherapist Kelly Watkins says: ‘In many ways, stress is useful. It’s our body’s automatic response to danger, trying to keep us safe. The trouble is that our brain can’t tell the difference between real threats and imagined ones. Whether we’re being chased by an angry tiger or having a fight with our partner, our body responds the same way going into a fight, flight or freeze response.
‘If this happens regularly, the effects can be damaging. Chronic stress has been linked to a weakened immune system, depression and even heart disease.’
It’s important to understand how you personally respond to stress. Are you argumentative (fight)? Do you find yourself physically or mentally withdrawing from the situation (flight) or perhaps doing nothing? (freeze).
Once you tune into your response, you can learn the best ways to tackle it…