Identify and deal with stress and anxiety

Billy Brogan can help you to live more creatively with stress/and anxiety by talking about what causes your stress.

What is stress/anxiety?  

We live in a world today where everyone masks what is really going on in their lives from family, friends, colleagues and teammates. Sometimes we are afraid of being judged or deemed not good enough. We worry and stress over issues, which in turn leads to anxiety. Research has shown that counselling [with a qualified therapist] is the best way to help individuals manage and live with issues.

  Stress/anxiety can be best described as a feeling that is created when you react to certain events in your life. It is also the body’s way of interacting with the mind. When working together the body and mind can help us rise to challenges with focus, strength, stamina, and a heightened alertness. Small amounts of stress may be desirable, beneficial, and even healthy. Positive stress helps improve work and athletic performance. It is also a factor in motivation, adaptation, and action within an environment or situation.

  Excessive amounts of stress which go unmanaged, however, may lead to many problems in the body and mind that are harmful and can even lead to various illnesses. Negative stress is a feeling of strain or pressure that the sufferer feels no control over.

  Stress/anxiety can be caused by upcoming events and situations, bad relationships, toxic environments, etc. but more often it is caused by our internal perceptions, beliefs and expectations that cause an individual to have anxiety or other negative emotions surrounding a situation. Humans experience stress, or perceive things as threatening, when we do not believe that our resources for coping with obstacles (stimuli, people, situations, etc.) are enough for what the circumstances demand.

  When we think the demands being placed on us exceed our ability to cope, we experience stress. External factors that by themselves are not threatening or stressful are deemed such for someone experiencing PTSD.

  Even triggers can cause stress…such as hearing a song on the radio that reminds one of past events or seeing a type of object that may remind the person of prior threatening events. News headlines and conversation topics can also trigger stress.

  Nobody enjoys admitting to being affected by stress or situations that may cause stress, whether personal or work-related. Sufferers don’t want to be judged or may see it as a sign of weakness. However, first step to recovering from stress is owning the fact that you do suffer from it. This will allow you to manage it better.

Symptoms/effects of stress

Symptoms may include: a sense of being overwhelmed, fears, phobias, feelings of anxiety, being angry, overall irritability, increased tiredness, insecurity, loss of appetite, and insomnia, among many others. The list is endless and stress can have a major impact on lifestyle. Untreated they may result in panic attacks and in many cases develop fears or phobias. An example of this today would be individuals who struggle with confidence issues may turn to drink or drugs to deal with the stress and relax them. In many cases this then becomes a habit and then the sufferer believes he/she requires these escapes to relax and deal with anxiety and so become addicted. As a coping mechanism cigarettes are just one example of this.

Causes of stress

Causes of stress are different for each individual. Remember, at birth we are a blank canvas without judgements, fears, values or beliefs. As we move through life we are affected and influenced by our environment and this has a huge bearing on how we see and react to the world around us. With our unique experiences come positive and negative side-effects and some of these negative side-effects can lead to stress and anxiety.

  Some of the known causes of stress are: bereavement, loss of a loved one, loss of job, breakdown of marriage or relationship, witnessing or being involved in a traumatic event, bullying and conflict – among others. Again, the list is endless and I’m sure you can think of more causes which are relevant to you.

  Stress doesn’t take a break and can affect us 24/7, so it is is important to identify in order to learn to manage it so that it doesn’t impact on negatively on our daily lives.

  There are many different types of stress including: work, sports and exam related stress, the feeling of not being good enough, relationship stress and many more.

  In order to control stress you must first identify it and admit to having issues with it. You must discover what causes it and the effect it has on you. To normalise stress and its symptoms, we must manage it, and this means talking about it with a professional. We contribute to our own stress by not dealing with it.

  Counselling/psychotherapy is the best way to deal with your stressors and talk about them – and helps you see what causes your stress. It also offers a safe place where you can learn to understand the issues and obtain greater insight into understanding and dealing with stress. Talking about your stress can help you to reengage with daily life and everyday activities. It also provides you with the tools to act rather that react in stressful situations.

 * Billy Brogan can help you to identify, talk about and manage stress and anxiety so that you can get back to an engaging and proactive frame of mind. Call Billy today on 094-9659966 or 086-0675433, and/or email or visit