Anxiety and stress share many of the same physical, mental and emotional symptoms: muscle tension, agitation, excessive worrying, restlessness, trouble sleeping , upset stomach, etc. However, the causes are different - and knowing which one you are suffering from - can help you find relief faster.
Stress is your body's response to external pressure (a tight work deadline, an argument with a friend, a job interview, etc.) which usually disappears after the stressful situation is over.
Anxiety, on the other hand, is an internal reaction to stress; a persistent feeling of apprehension, dread, worry or unease that won't go away, even after the stressful situation has passed.
For most people, stress and anxiety come and go. But constant or overwhelming stress and anxiety can escalate into panic or a panic attack - a sudden, intense fear or terror that reaches a peak within minutes. Untreated anxiety can also develop into other serious disorders such as
- GAD (generalized anxiety disorder)
- Social anxiety
- Separation anxiety
- OCD (obsessive-compulsive disorder)
- PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder)
How Stress Management Coaching Can Help
No matter how anxious you may feel, take heart! Studies have found that anxiety can be decreased through coaching. Stress is a common trigger for anxiety and by reducing it, you can stop anxiety from taking over and interfering with your daily life. Personal coaching can provide the roadmap, step-by-step guidance and stress relief skills to feel calmer, more confident and in control faster by helping you to
Address warning signs. Catching and alleviating symptoms of stress early can prevent anxiety from spiraling into a disorder that can be difficult to control. Using relaxation techniques at the first signs of stress can also help you alleviate anxiety. Reducing muscle tension, slowing down breathing and calming the mind are natural remedies that are generally safe to use alongside more conventional medical therapies.
Identify your stress triggers. Everyone reacts to stress differently (headaches, trouble sleeping, anger, stomach aches, sadness, etc. Becoming mindful of events, situations and people that trigger your physical, mental and emotional reactions can help you keep stress at bay - and minimize anxiety. Take our free stress quizzes to assess your personal and work stress triggers.
Manage anxious thoughts and emotions. Many people spend their day stuck in stress, frustration and overwhelm, often needlessly. Reframing challenges and developing a positive mindset can help you regain calm and control . Research has shown that attitudes such as forgiveness, gratitude and kindness can also help alleviate anxiety and increase the ability to manage negative thoughts and moods.
Improve your lifestyle. Proper nutrition, regular exercise and the ability to relax are proven ways to ease stress. By making small but significant changes to your lifestyle - eating a healthy diet, increasing physical exercise and mindful movement, getting adequate sleep, taking time for self and connecting with others - you can decrease anxiety and the frequency of panic attacks.
Develop new coping skills. Deep breathing, muscle relaxation, meditation, body scanning and guided imagery are powerful mindfulness techniques for de-stressing your body and brain. In a recent UCLA study, participants who learned and practiced mindfulness for just 5 minutes a day over 3-weeks significantly reduced their stress. They also experienced an increase in life satisfaction, mastery of their environment and more positive relationships with others.
Ready to find relief? Read about our Stress Management Programs and schedule a free discovery call today. Serving out of Manhattan, NY and available everywhere with online services. Learn how personal coaching can help you break free from anxiety and live with greater ease, balance, joy and wellbeing.