Few things seem worse than the weekend-to-workday transition, but if you find yourself unable to adjust (or ruining your two days off by worrying about going back to the grind) it might be time to acknowledge whether you need to pay better attention to your signs of stress “ because while productivity is important, the last thing you need to worry about is a summer defined by sleepless nights, stomach upset or the inability to enjoy those lazy sun-drenched afternoons. Here are the signs of stress to watch out for, and why you shouldn’t ignore them.
We’ve all spent nights tossing and turning, but if symptoms of insomnia are starting to seem more regular than rare, you may want to re-evaluate what’s on your mind. Are your sleepless nights centered around due dates or high pressure events? Or are you just unable to turn off your brain? Either way, if old-fashioned remedies like chamomile or hot milk aren’t lulling you to sleep, you may need to talk to your doctor about why you’re not sleeping and how to eliminate those insomnia-spurring stress factors.
Embarrassing as it may seem, if your bowels and stomach have started acting up, you may need to consider what extenuating factors are as well. While diet can contribute to digestive issues, Irritable Bowel Syndrome is often directly connected to stress, and if you’ve found that you’re not digesting food properly (especially around a hectic schedule), you may need a prescription or diet plan to ensure that you’re still absorbing essential nutrients “ especially if these flare-ups become the norm.
Food and Drink = Crutch
To lose your appetite or to eat your feelings every so often is the story of many of our lives, but if you’ve started to rely on food to combat being worked-up or unhappy, you may be more stressed out than you think. If you’re rushing home to pour yourself a drink or to sit down with a box of cookies, you’re likely consuming them for comfort. And while we’ve all needed to nestle down with a glass of merlot and a sleeve of Oreos, doing so regularly is not only physically unhealthy, but can be masking a more serious situation you should address.
Having a good cry is healthy, but if your emotions are fluctuating to the point of concern, it’s time to look at what’s happening at work, home or school and pinpoint the cause of your near-manic tendencies. Frustration, anger and sadness are all common, but if you start to identify with the likes of Jekyll and Hyde, you may be dealing with anxiety or even a more serious mental or emotional disorder. After all, stress is far from a problem to be taken lightly, and if you don’t nip it in the bud right away, it could lead to a condition that may require more than just a consultation with your physician.