Create Obstacles And Rewards
If you tend to pick up your phone when youre supposed to be working, turn off your phone and put it somewhere out of sight before you get started with the day.
Make sure to reward yourself for your efforts, too. After you get a good chunk of work done, take a break to watch a funny video, catch up with your friends, or swap selfies with your partner.
Thinking in terms of rewards rather than punishments can help you encourage yourself, too.
- Instead of: If I dont work out tonight, I cant watch the next episode of Lucifer.’
- Try: Ill go for a jog after work, and then Ill watch an episode of Lucifer before bed.
If youre a long-time procrastinator, breaking the habit may require a little extra support.
Connecting with a therapist may be a good next step when procrastination:
- affects your performance at school or work
- creates problems in your personal relationships
- leads to feelings of stress, anxiety, or depression, or makes existing symptoms worse
A therapist can help you identify and explore possible emotional triggers. They can also provide more insight into any underlying mental health concerns contributing to procrastination.
How Stress Affects Your Body/mind
Your adrenal glands are the heroes of your moment-by-moment response to pressure and stress.
- They are the size of a walnut and sit left and right at the top of your kidneys
- They make and secrete adrenaline , cortisol the stress hormone and other hormones.
- They turn processes automatically up and down 24/7 depending on need.
However, when the demands on you outstrip your resources, your adrenal glands, like two members of your 24/7 personal protection team, step up their protective processes. Theyre now constantly alert. Theyre beginning to feel the strain because they were designed in ancient times for short bouts of stress only to help you escape from marauding animals,
So, after a prolonged and highly stressful situation or event, the demand on your adrenal glands is above that which they were meant to do. No wonder then that your body/mind begins to buckle!
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The Effects Of Chronic Stress
Your nervous system isnt very good at distinguishing between emotional and physical threats. If youre super stressed over an argument with a friend, a work deadline, or a mountain of bills, your body can react just as strongly as if youre facing a true life-or-death situation. And the more your emergency stress system is activated, the easier it becomes to trigger, making it harder to shut off.
If you tend to get stressed out frequently, like many of us in todays demanding world, your body may exist in a heightened state of stress most of the time. And that can lead to serious health problems. Chronic stress disrupts nearly every system in your body. It can suppress your immune system, upset your digestive and reproductive systems, increase the risk of heart attack and stroke, and speed up the aging process. It can even rewire the brain, leaving you more vulnerable to anxiety, depression, and other mental health problems.
Health problems caused or exacerbated by stress include:
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Procrastination As A Mental Health Symptom
The source of procrastination sometimes runs a little deeper than a difficulty regulating emotions.
If you live with anxiety, for example, you might spend a lot of time worrying about what specific tasks involve or feeling nervous about what could go wrong. These kinds of fears can absolutely lead to delay.
The link between anxiety conditions and perfectionism can also play a part in procrastination. When you dont believe you can do something perfectly, you might feel anxious about doing it at all and continually put it off instead.
Depression, which often wears away at energy and self-worth, can also involve procrastination. You might neglect certain responsibilities because you cant muster up the motivation to complete them, or because you doubt yourself and your skills.
Procrastination can also result from
What Causes Anxiety Twitching
Anxiety causes your nervous system to release neurotransmitters, which are chemicals that your body uses to send messages between neurons, or between neurons and muscles.
Some types of neurotransmitters will tell your muscles to move. When you have anxiety, neurotransmitters may be released even when theres no clear reason for them to be released. This is what can cause anxiety twitching.
Another reason anxiety can cause muscle twitching is because it can cause you to hyperventilate. Muscle twitching is one symptom of hyperventilation.
If your twitching happens long-term or interferes with your daily life, your doctor may be able to help. To diagnose your condition, theyll first take a medical history, which will include:
- questions about your symptoms
- when symptoms started
- details about the twitching
If youre also experiencing anxiety with the twitching, be sure to tell your doctor. That might be enough for them to diagnose you with twitching related to anxiety. However, they might still do tests to rule out other conditions.
These tests may include:
- blood tests to look for electrolyte problems or thyroid issues
- an electromyogram , which looks at how well your muscles work
- a CT scan or MRI of your brain or spine
- a nerve conduction test, to see if your nerves are working correctly
If you have anxiety and other potential causes of twitching can be ruled out, your doctor will likely be able to diagnose you with anxiety twitching.
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Why Is He Distancing Himself
You can definitely feel that things have been different lately, but still, he insists that there is nothing wrong and he is not feeling strange, in any way. That, in itself, is a problem. Heres why he might be avoiding this discussion:
- Hes stressed out about other stuff Think about other aspects of his life are they at all stressful? His family? His work? Maybe this isnt about you at all, and actually about him withdrawing because hes going through something.
- Hes confused about his feelings Feelings arent static, so they change and transform all the time. He knows hes feeling different, but he doesnt know how or why just yet, so hes taking some time to figure himself out.
- He doesnt want you to overreact Theres something on his mind, but its not a huge problem and he doesnt want you to make a big deal out of it or start a fight. Hes trying to figure out how to tell you.
Lets Burn Your Problems Seriously
To get unstuck, we often need a healthy distraction, says Dr. Tobin. We need a break from the unproductive obsessions that accompany being overwhelmed and stuck. That said, he suggests that you burning your partners problems is a positively jarring proposal theyll never expect. Ask your partner to write down whats stressing them out and then physically burn the piece of paper. Because we need to help each other stay healthy, we have to be ready to try anything and everything that might do the trick.
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What Can Prolonged Stress Lead To
Stress is a natural reaction to many situations in life, such as work, family, relationships and money problems.
We mentioned earlier on that a moderate amount of stress can help us perform better in challenging situations,34 but too much or prolonged stress can lead to physical problems. This can include lower immunity levels,35 digestive and intestinal difficulties, e.g. irritable bowel syndrome ,36 or mental health problems such as depression.3 This means it is important to manage your stress and keep it at a healthy level to prevent long-term damage to your body and mind.
Fitness Tips: Stay Healthy Manage Anxiety Andstress
For the biggest benefits of exercise, try to include at least 2½ hours of moderate-intensity physical activity each week, 1¼ hours of a vigorous-intensity activity , or a combination of the two.
- 5 X 30: Jog, walk, bike, or dance three to five times a week for 30 minutes.
- Set small daily goals and aim for daily consistency rather than perfect workouts. It’s better to walk every day for 15-20 minutes than to wait until the weekend for a three-hour fitness marathon. Lots of scientific data suggests that frequency is most important.
- Find forms of exercise that are fun or enjoyable. Extroverted people often like classes and group activities. People who are more introverted often prefer solo pursuits.
- Distract yourself with an iPod or other portable media player to download audiobooks, podcasts, or music. Many people find its more fun to exercise while listening to something they enjoy.
- Recruit an exercise buddy. It’s often easier to stick to your exercise routine when you have to stay committed to a friend, partner, or colleague.
- Be patient when you start a new exercise program. Most sedentary people require about four to eight weeks to feel coordinated and sufficiently in shape so that exercise feels easier.
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Coping With Stress At Work
Working hard should not be confused with overworking at the expense of relationships and physical health.
Coping with stress at work.
Everyone who has ever held a job has, at some point, felt the pressure of work-related stress. Any job can have stressful elements, even if you love what you do. In the short-term, you may experience pressure to meet a deadline or to fulfill a challenging obligation. But when work stress becomes chronic, it can be overwhelmingand harmful to both physical and emotional health.
Unfortunately, such long-term stress is all too common. In fact, has consistently found that work is cited as a significant source of stress by a majority of Americans. You cant always avoid the tensions that occur on the job. Yet you can take steps to manage work-related stress.
Help Them Notice Signs And Symptoms Of Stress
Often, someone might not notice that how they feel or behave is a sign of stress. For example, this may include having problems sleeping, or drinking more alcohol than usual.
You may be able to see these signs in someone else. This could even be before they recognise it themselves.
If you’ve noticed this, you could let them know and ask how you can help. Try to be gentle when starting this conversation, in case it is something they are not aware of or feel sensitive about.
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Taking Steps To Manage Stress
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Meet Up With A Friend
What are friends for besides helping us stop stressing about everything?
Social interaction is often a good thing when it comes to being stressed, as it can make us feel more normal and let us vent our frustrations out.
It also helps us turn our attention to other people instead of just our own hectic schedules.
Make plans to meet up with a friend that you trust and is a good listener, and make sure to fit it in where you can.
If youre stressed because your schedule is so busy and you cant find time to meet people, see if you can plan to hang out while doing something you already needed to do anyway like picking the kids up from school or even do something simple like your grocery shopping together.
Reach out for that human connection!
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Theres So Much To Do But You Have A Difficult Time Deciding How To Start
It can be hard to know where to start when youre to-do list seems like its a mile long. In fact, it can be so overwhelming that you end up doing nothing- because making a decision on what to do first is too overwhelming. This is called analysis paralysis.
What to do about it: One thing thats really helped me is overcoming the need to be perfect. If youre a perfectionist, it can be really hard to make decisions and take action because youre so afraid of getting it wrong or making mistakes. Here are 5 Ways to Overcome Perfectionism and Embrace your Imperfect Life.
When To See Your Gp About Your Stress Levels
If you’ve tried self-help techniques and they aren’t working, you should go to see your GP. They may suggest other coping techniques for you to try or recommend some form of counselling or cognitive behavioural therapy.
If your stress is causing serious health problems, such as high blood pressure, you may need to take medication or further tests.
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Inform Yourself And Get Help
Visit your doctor to get a diagnosis.
If you already take any medication, have them review your meds as they too can cause you to feel stressed and anxious.
If your doctor prescribes any drugs, be sure to do your research. Familiarise yourself with Dr Kelly Brogans work.
Get advice from a CBT therapist.
Talk It Out With A Friend
When youre feeling stressed, take a break to call a friend and talk about your problems. Good relationships with friends and loved ones are important to any healthy lifestyle.
Theyre especially important when youre under a lot of stress. A reassuring voice, even for a minute, can put everything in perspective.
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Tip Seven Distract Yourself Or Be Present
WARNING: Dont do this tip if youre just going to be procrastinating
Do this tip if you genuinely need a rest or a break.
So, for example, on the weekends Im really conscious about not working unless I absolutely have to. But a lot of times I might still be feeling stressed about work, so I need to do something that allows me to take a break to unwind and switch off.
In these sorts of cases I really recommend you either distract yourself or be super duper present in the moment.
Now you wont necessarily know which one you need, especially at first, and sometimes I still get it wrong and I think I need to be distracted when actually I need to be present, and vice versa so you might need to test it out and see which one helps you feel best at different times.
Most of the time, and I think this is because Im so introverted, I need the distraction. Because for me, being present involves being with friends or family, thats how Im most present as Im not super great at being present on my own
So, if I need to be present, I know I need to schedule in some time to spend with friends and family and that really helps me stay present and allows me to switch off from all the things going on in my head.
Distracting-wise, I find I need to go to a different world and not be in my life and the easiest way to do that is read a book, watch a TV series or watch a movie.
Tip Six Do Something Cliched Calming And Relaxing
This calming tip is probably going to sound a bit weird, but do something that you traditionally think of as calming even if you dont actually enjoy it
So think of those classic articles in magazines, where its like, the 10 best ways to de-stress, and the contents is super cliched, like have a bubble bath, light a candle, paint your nails and those sorts of things.
I find, even though these things do feel really cliche, that they can be really helpful because we have programmed in our head that these are calming activities. For example, Im the first to admit I dont like a bath, Im a shower person, but if Im feeling stressed I will have a bath and it does relax me.
Because in my head that is a calming thing and so Im like subconsciously telling myself Im going to feel better when Ive had a bath, and I do!
For other people, it might be painting your nails, or having a hot cocoa, something like that.
Theres lots of different things that are considered calming in our society, so pick the thing that when you think of a calming activity immediately comes to mind and even if you dont actually love the activity, just do it, because its going to trigger something in your brain that says this is a calming activity and so you will be feeling a lot calmer when youve finished it
Like I said, its a bit weird, but it does work.
So then a really, really easy one is lighting a candle because we are all taught that lighting a candle is really helpful to de-stress.
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Your Everyday Inconveniences Are Triggering Deeper Feelings
There are many things throughout the day that can lead to brief feelings of stress or anxiety. These add up over time, and more importantly, they trigger more deep-seated fears we may have subconsciously. Before long, you may find yourself stressed out about something that seems like it should be no big deal.
For example, your long commute or a traffic jam can be minorly stressful. However, it can also trigger your fear of being late or being irresponsible.
Perhaps someone was rude to you while you were grabbing your morning coffee. While this is annoying and unnecessary, it really shouldnt be cause for stress. This encounter may bring up unresolved fears of being inadequate or being bullied, in which case, could become a trigger for high stress.
It could just be that these everyday mundane inconveniences dont quite fit into your unrealistic expectations, which we previously discussed. If you find yourself being stressed out over these daily occurrences, you should take some time to reflect on what the actual stressor is in these scenarios.