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Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Dealing With Emotional Stress

 By: Trevor Dumbleton

One very difficult form of stress to cope with and manage is
emotional stress. After all, it is often self-created, it can
come out of nowhere and the stress caused by it only heightens
the emotions felt. Thus, as the emotional stress increases, the
emotions get worse, heightening the emotional stress. Thus, the
problem recreates the cause and the problem only gets worse.

Emotional stress is often triggered by a dramatic event that
puts a person's nervous system under severe strain. This could
be an event such as losing a loved one, seeing someone die, or
being put into a life-threatening situation. An event such as
this can put severe strain on a person's mind and nerves and the
incredible strain can cause changes in the way that the brain
works. In fact, a severe emotional strain could even cause
someone to suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder.

However, emotional stress does not arise from a sudden shock. It
can also arise from a total emotional strain that adds up to an
overwhelming strain that prevents a person from thinking about
anything other than the problems that seem to have no solution.
Then, as the stress mounts, the mind is left in its own cocoon
of stress that can only call attention to itself, cutting the
person off from the world outside. Thus, emotional stress can
lead to detachment, and inability to concentrate, fatigue, and
even memory problems.

Unfortunately, emotional stress also increases moodiness, which
can often make things worse. In fact, those attacks of emotional
excess can turn emotional excess up to unbearable levels,
leading to further attacks. Then, as these bouts of emotional
stress keep adding up, it all becomes too much and the sufferer
is left almost completely lost and alone in their own cycle of
emotion that hammers incessantly at the brain.

In order to deal with emotional stress, the person who suffers
from it needs to take a break from everything that is creating
all the emotions. For instance, going on a vacation can be an
excellent diversion, as it provides the brain with new inputs
that are not charged with associations. By leaving the so-called
"scene of the crime" the person who suffers from emotional
stress will be able to remove some of the emotional stress by
removing its triggers. Then, hopefully, the loop will be broken,
allowing the person to start fresh.

Another effective means for dealing with emotional stress is to
practice yoga or learn to meditate. Exercises such as these are
designed to put the person's mind in the moment, so that they
will not worry about anything other than what they are doing in
the case of yoga or, in the case of meditation, by clearing the
mind entirely, allowing it to shed its emotions and start again
with a clean slate. Either method can be very effective for
dealing with emotional stress, as they give the brain a chance
to relax. Then, once it is relaxed, it will be able to shed the
emotional stress and get back to the business of thinking

Likewise, having a hobby can be very good for emotional stress.
An activity such as needlepoint, building model ships, playing a
sport, or going fishing can help shed stress. This is because a
person who is engaged in a hobby is enjoying him or herself
while thinking only about what they are doing rather than
everything that needs to get done. It is as though it is a cross
between a vacation and meditation, in that the person is taking
a break from life while putting the mind onto something else.

Thus, the stress disappears and the person can feel like they
are accomplishing something, even if it is only a minor,
pointless success. After all, a pointless success is still a
success, be it finishing an Afghan, building a small version of
the Cutty Sark, or simply catching a nice trout. It's always
nice to know that some sort of effort has been effective, and
hobbies are an excellent way to suddenly become effective.

People should not be daunted by emotional stress. Rather, they
should try to understand where it is coming from and what they
can do to prevent it. Though the effort can sometimes be
difficult, success is truly its own reward. After all, achieving
an escape from emotional stress will provide instant benefits
for the mind and long-term benefits for the body. As well, by
understanding emotional stress, people can see what causes it
and, hopefully, discover what they need to do to either cope
with it or eliminate it entirely. So if you or someone you know
is suffering from emotional stress, find some solutions that
will work. And by continuing to implement those solutions,
emotional stress can be turned into a thing of the past.

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