Life is stressful. Just picture the following scene: You’re running late for an important appointment, and you find yourself stuck in traffic while your phone is ringing. You’ve waited a long time for this appointment, and you know that there won’t be new possibilities any time soon in future. But, right now, the car is too warm; your hands are sweating on the steering wheel, and the traffic jam has not moved in several minutes. In other words, you feel a familiar knot in your stomach: You are stressed out. Stress is a common element of day-to-day life. However, more often than not, stress is not the result of external factors that disrupt your life. Stress, and especially chronic stress – which is a latent and generally ignored condition – tends to be self-inflicted in ways you wouldn’t even think about. How does a person notice they might be suffering from chronic stress? Chronic stress affects your mood, your appetite, your concentration, and your relationship over an extended period of time – being several hours, days, or even months. While anecdotic stress is a short occurrence that is connected to a specific event and disappears when the event is over – such as being stressed during an important exam, for example.
When it comes to chronic stress, the effects can be harmful to your health, especially because it is difficult to notice that you are under pressure. While it can be easy to spot external causes such as a stressful manager affecting your day-to-day performance or a problematic relationship that drains you, most people don’t know when they are creating unnecessary stress for themselves. Here are 10 common examples of things that could happen to you on a daily basis.
#1. Wearing uncomfortable clothes
What are the latest seasonal trends? From tube tops to skin-tights dresses – the famous bodycon dress that is making a reappearance after getting famous during the 1990s –, not all trends are comfortable to wear. Especially if you add to it the painful toll countless of women have to take every single day for wearing an ill-fitted bra. Unfortunately, as 80% of all women wear the wrong bra size, if you’ve found that you can’t wait to get back home to remove your bra, you’re probably one of them. What you wear affects how you feel about yourself. It’s well documented that the colors you wear can make you feel more professional, attractive or energetic. For example, wearing the color red brings passion into your day, and that makes it the ideal color for a date night. Similarly, the styles of clothes you choose can also influence your mood. Wearing a pencil skirt can make you feel more professional and sophisticated than tailored pants.
But what about the way clothes that don’t really fit affect you? Clothes that are too tight for you make you feel oppressed all day long and contribute to an increase in stress levels. Itchy or painful bras create a constant suffocating sensation that reduces your concentration, makes you more irritable and increases anxious responses.
#2. Developing an unhealthy habit
Nobody is perfect. Even if you are trying to stick to a healthy lifestyle, it’s fair to assume that you might have coping mechanisms to handle daily stress and frustration. These coping strategies may not be healthy. Some people choose to go for a jog at the end of the day to evacuate their anxiety. Other meditate. But in a more practical day-to-day situation, when you need to release pressure quickly and effectively, sports and meditation may not be your preferred go-to methods. Smoking is, therefore, a common choice for people who work in hectic environments and who need to keep a cool head in difficult circumstances. Unfortunately, even if you’re trying to control your habit and monitor your consumption of tobacco, you train your brain to a new gesture. When you are stressed out, you light up a cigarette and hold it between your fingers. For many smokers, this simple gesture is precisely what makes it almost impossible to quit. It becomes a reward movement that is deeply connected to stress relief. When you quit, you don’t have an alternative motion to replace your bad habit. Therefore, if you want to embrace a healthy lifestyle without increasing your stress levels, you might want to find out about vaping – you can read more at VaporVanity. The secret is to replace a bad habit with a positive one to create a new relief gesture.
#3. Irregular blood sugar levels
How do you keep your energy levels during the day? If you love a sweet treat from time to time, you need to be careful how about it affect your cortisol levels. Indeed, fluctuating blood sugar is one of the biggest causes of stress. If you like to munch on a donut while reading a book or if you love a hot drink with plenty of whipped cream and lots of syrup, you might increase your glucose levels. Fat and sugary treats cause a peak in the production of cortisol to help manage your blood sugar levels, which ultimately creates stress.
#4. Your Facebook notifications
Despite being 10-year-old, Facebook remains a popular social media platform with over 2.13 billion active users per month. However, social media is not only a fun way to keep in touch with your friends and relatives. It can also contribute to some of your stress-related issues. Indeed, social media platforms encourage you to compare yourself with other users, which affects your self-esteem. Additionally, it is linked to a new phobia, the fear of missing out, which creates anxiety if you can’t check your social feeds regularly. Besides, political debates and abusive comments make social media platforms a stressful place for users.
#5. Your neighbor’s children
You’d love to stay in bed on Saturday morning, but your neighbor’s children wake you up every weekend. The kids start screaming shortly after 7 AM and force you out of bed. The rest of the weekend continues in the same way until finally, they are back to school on Monday. Ultimately, you feel more tired than ever when you go back to work. This is called noise pollution and is a major cause of stress. If your neighbor’s kids aren’t to blame, you can be affected by intrusive car noises if you live in a busy town, or even loud home noises such as the TV running in the background all day for instance.
#6. Having creative skills
Are you the kind of person who’s blessed with a fantastic imagination? Being imaginative is an advantage when you’re in a creative environment, at work or through your hobbies. But it can be a destructive force if your imagination feeds your anxiety. Indeed, when your mind begins to explore what’if’s scenarios, you can find yourself getting worried about the most mundane things.
#7. You can’t accept your success
I’m not good enough for this job, and one day, they will notice and fire me.
The innocent thought that can be attributed to a modest mind is, in reality, a sign of the imposter syndrome that affects many Millennials. Indeed, for young adults, the need to prove yourself is very high and can lead to feeling inadequate, overwhelmed or judged. As a result, the fear of being found out can develop and take over your professional and social life.
#8. Not having a place to relax
What is the first time you do when you come back home? The most common answer is to turn on the TV. However, watching TV doesn’t encourage stress relief at the end of a long day. You need a cozy and quiet place where you can actively forget about the world, such as a reading nook at home. Having a room that is dedicated to relaxation encourages the mind to switch off and let go. Sitting at the kitchen table with your favorite magazine and a cup of tea can do wonder; you don’t need to consider a home extension to build your soothing retreat.
#9. You’re single
What being single has to do with stress? A lot of people are happily single and have never felt better. True. In reality, it’s the lack of physical contact that can generate anxiety. Physical touch, between individuals – such as a hug – or with a pet can actively lower your heartbeat, which makes you calmer. Being, however, forced in a life with limited socialization can establish a baseline for a chronic stress disorder. There is no way around it: See your friends; hug your darling; take on a ball dances class! But ultimately you need to create contact.
#10. Your engaged feminism is working against you as a person
Feminism is about promoting women in everyday experiences. However, more and more feminists have developed an anti-men attitude and a belief that women are harassed and discriminated against. Instead of supporting positively women and their aspirations, this aggressive form of feminism vilify all men and the society, which ultimately might make enemies out of individuals who would have supported your cause and dreams.
Are you creating the stress in your life? It would be foolish to consider that you are the only person responsible for the stressful event of your life. But, the truth is that your day-to-day choices can encourage chronic stress and anxiety disorders.