Stress is a normal part of life, but when stress levels increase or persist, it can become harmful to our body. In the modern world, stress is something we’re all fighting against. From keeping up with social media accounts to professional obligations, the constant stress of being in the modern world can take its toll on our mental, emotional, and physical well-being.
When being under constant stress, our body can react in a number of ways. Some people may become very irritable, while others may feel depressed or anxious. Many people will experience physical signs of stress such as fatigue, nausea, headaches, and muscle tension. The most common physical symptom of stress, however, is fatigue. It is a sign that your body is under constant pressure and struggling to cope with the stress.
The human body is remarkably resilient, but it does have its limits. When stressors are constant and overwhelming, the body can react in one of two ways. It can either accommodate stress or exhaust. Exhaustion is the body’s natural reaction to stress, and it can manifest itself in a number of ways. For example, being exhausted can make you feel sad, angry, or irritable.
Exhaustion is very often appreciated at social level, while taking some rest and dedicating moments for yourself is not that accepted, but accompanied with guilty feelings for not doing and achieving enough. It is not surprising that we find ourselves at some point with low batteries, with a feeling of emptiness. Exhaustion is a consequence of workaholic style adopted by many of us. Work is necessary for most people, giving us beyond a salary, the possibility to form relationships, to belong to a certain community and to find purpose and meaning. Despite all these positive effects, when we dedicate too much of our life for the working area, we are losing and ignoring other aspects: our passions, hobbies, our family and friends, our person in the end.
We are so keen to plan and to define “to do lists” that we forget to find some minutes for ourselves in order to recharge out batteries and to gain some energy. Without planning our free moments, our natural tendency is very often, to work harder, to achieve more and to postpone always the silent moments. In order to create the habit for relaxing, we need to plan first some “just me moments” allowing us to relax, to recharge and to pay attention to our needs. Taking a break could be the best idea we have in order to become more creative, more energized and more focused. If you find yourself overwhelmed, lacking sleep, with a hectic schedule and suffering from isolation from your dear ones – family or friends, it is obvious that you are very close to the exhaustion and burnout, if not already there.
We understand very late what is the most important for us and how the quality of our relationships could improve our whole life. Working hard and sacrificing our most important relationships will not bring us a higher level of wellbeing, satisfaction and happiness. But it takes courage to assume that we need to put first our needs and our interests in order to be in a good and healthy state. To confront the social stigma and pressure for doing more, achieving more and accept what is best for us and not what could bring others’ validation and appreciation. Living for ourselves starts with knowing what we really need, separate from what others think is important and necessary and start to build our own lifestyle.