Physical: fatigue; feeling dizzy or weak; headaches; grinding
teeth or clenching your jaw; tension in neck, shoulders and
back, and dermatological problems.
Psychological: feeling overextended, overwhelmed or overloaded;
feeling like running away and hiding from it all; feeling tense
or anxious; feeling sad and crying without any apparent reason;
difficulty concentrating; increase in alcohol or drug use,
increase in smoking or eating (or loss of appetite).
Interpersonal symptoms: working harder but accomplishing less;
getting to work late and missing appointments consistently;
general irritability with co-workers and family; your children
are complaining more about your grumpy moods; more sensitive to
the noise, activity and demands of your children, husband, pets;
feeling always behind schedule, that you will never catch up.
If you find that many of these symptoms are present and you want
to make some changes, consider these three choices.
Change your situation by
a) negotiating for changes that you want, at home and at work;
b) leaving the situation all together, eliminating tasks or
c) organizing home and work so it’s more manageable.
Change your perception of
the situation. Stress starts with how you judge, view or
perceive a situation. Look at it as an outsider might to get
another viewpoint. Lower your expectations of yourself so you
regain your sense of self-worth.
Build your tolerance for
stress by increasing physical conditioning; improving nutrition;
relaxing for 10 to 20 minutes daily, re-thinking your situation
and approaching it with an attitude of self-support, and taking
a class or workshop to learn more stress-management methods.
continue to feel stuck in the “pressure cooker,” you might want
to consider a few sessions with a professional counselor to gain
a clearer picture of the situation and develop a plan that fits