If you are aware that you are stressed you can work to develop awareness of behaviour patterns that might bring temporary short term relief but unfortunately exacerbate your stress in the long term.
Here are seven common behaviours to watch – put your sensible head on and try to overcome your inclination to go with them.
- Watch what you eat – are you consoling yourself with sugary or fatty snacks?
- Watch out for other behaviour such as self-medicating stress with nicotine, alcohol, tranquillisers or painkillers
- Make sure you are getting enough sleep – I try to make sure that I am in bed by ‘pumpkin time’ i.e. midnight because I know that the calm, collected and fresh looking Catharine won’t be around tomorrow if I am in bed later than midnight.
- On the otherhand – don’t oversleep or stay in bed all day
- Watch out for when you are getting tired and do something about it before you get too stressed
- Watch out for signs and symptoms and if you think you might be getting ill, you probably are, so don’t carry on as if you aren’t ill.
- If you can anticipate stressful situations then you might be able to work towards managing them a bit better – increase your ‘down time’ or reduce other committments.