Sometimes you know you’re overstressed, and you realize that you have to take time off work or retreat from your social obligations for a while.
Here are nine warning signs that you’re overstressed and need to practice more self-care.
1. You’re In Pain
Sometimes, you might not realize how stressed you are until it starts to take its toll on your body. You can experience everything from chronic muscle aches to heart palpitations, stomach ulcers, and digestive upsets.
2. Your Sleep Is Poor
Whether you’re sleeping too much because you feel exhausted or you’re finding that it’s hard to fall asleep, remember that stress is a very common cause
3. Your Weight Fluctuates
Consider what you’ve been eating lately, why you’ve been eating it, and what food means to you. Are you either forgetting to eat (and losing weight) or eating too much?
4. You Obsess Over Your Problems
If it seems like there’s nothing you can do to shift your mind away from work concerns, financial worries or relationship issues, this is a major warning sign that stress is controlling your life right now.
5. You Can’t Be Quiet And Still
Going for a leisurely walk, sitting quietly or just considering your own thoughts should be relaxing and rejuvenating activities. However, if you delay these types of activities at all costs and make sure that you’re constantly occupied, you’re probably chronically stressed. .
6. Your Patience Is Wearing Thin
Reduced tolerance for other people (even those you truly love) is often one of the first signs that stress is slowly starting to get the best of you. We often displace our anger and anxiety, taking it out on those nearby as a way of ensuring it gets expressed in some way (no matter how unhealthy).
7. Frequent Mood Swings
Stress hormones can cause dramatic swings from happiness to rage, or from misery to joy. This rollercoaster of feelings is exhausting in itself. It can often be a direct result of bottling up intense emotions rather than taking proper care of yourself.
8. You’re Losing Hair
There are many medical causes of hair loss, but research shows that undergoing extreme stress can change your physiological functions to the extent that too many of your hairs go into the “resting phase” at once. You may, therefore, lose up to double the usual amount of hair around 3-4 months after the onset of stress.
9. Your Sex Drive Has Declined
Finally, many people don’t think to consider the connection between stress and a decrease in libido—or simply don’t want to think about how this is impacting on their sex lives. However, it makes perfect sense that being overstressed leads to exhaustion, a reduction in physical stamina, and hormonal changes that make intimacy less appealing.
Talking candidly with your partner is one of the best things you can do here, as open communication allows you to generate solutions and maintain empathy.