Work can be difficult in the best of times, especially when you’re also trying to manage a family, finances, a social life, supporting loved ones and trying to find a moment for yourself in between the never ending to do list. Add on a dealing with a global pandemic and all of a sudden nothing seems bearable anymore and everything seems overwhelming.
Your body may know before you even do that you’re stressed out, and is probably sending you alerts that you are not okay. Here are a few of the common signs that you’re stressed out from work and that it may be time to reconsider how to move forward in a healthy way.
You Can’t Sleep
Sleepless nights making you feel groggy and irritable the next day? If your mind is racing, it can be hard to stay asleep and make you prone to waking up in the middle of the night thinking about your never ending to do list. While a few restless nights aren't a big deal, it’s when it becomes a pattern that you may want to consider your workload and how you’re managing it.
You Get Headaches
Your body has a natural response to stressful environments, and that is guarding your body from injury by tensing up your muscles. When your work is associated with stress, it keeps your muscles tight, causing tension in your neck, shoulders and head which can lead to chronic headaches. Stress is real and sometimes it manifests itself in pain.
You’re Tired. All. The. Time
That is a deep fatigue that no nap or weekend seems to cure. Chronic stress will drain you, and it’s a vicious cycle that can be hard to break. You feel overwhelmed because you’re working too long, and you’re working too long because you feel overwhelmed.
You’re Getting Sick More Often
Chronic stress can compromise your immune system, leading you more susceptible to getting sick. Especially in this time, when the world is dealing with a pandemic, taking care of your stress levels so that your immune system is at its best is more important than ever.
Your Sex Life Sucks
When you bring your work home with you, or if you work at home and never really stop working, your relationship can surfer. For both men and women, chronic stress will lower libido and in turn start to affect your intimate part of your relationship.
Your Stomach is Always….Weird.
Indigestion, bloating, you name it - it can all be associated with stress. Stress impacts what the gut digests and can also change our gut bacteria, which in turn will impact our mood. It’s why you may get stomach pains when you are upset. In addition, chronic stress can lead to poor diets- like craving more sugar as a response to the stress, which in turn create a number of other health related problems.
Although it feels counteractive to spend less time on work and more time on taking care of yourself- both physically and emotionally, it can actually increase the quality and results of your work. When you take time for yourself, you can spend more time doing good work that matters.