When you’re stressed or anxious, you’re more likely to make bad decisions or get involved in harmful behaviour. It’s important you understand the signs of stress so you can get help.
Look for both physical signs and feelings that suggest you might be stressed.
Thoughts and feelings that indicate stress and anxiety:
Physical signs of stress and anxiety:
A little bit of stress in your life can be good for you. Stress helps you to focus, get your work done, hand in assignments on time, perform well at your job, etc. But if you think your stress might be impacting your everyday life in a negative way, then you should take steps to help relieve it.
Many people deal with their stress by removing the source of the stress (such as quitting an extra-curricular activity during exams), taking care of their body, enjoying hobbies and time with friends, talking about their stress, and taking breaks to relax and recharge.
If you start withdrawing from other people, thinking about suicide or hurting yourself, have no enthusiasm for things that used to bring you joy, and you’re feeling bad about yourself all the time, you may be experiencing depression. This is more serious than stress, and you should speak to an adult you trust about how you’re feeling.
You shouldn’t feel ashamed of feeling stressed, anxious, or depressed. These are perfectly normal human functions, and are often a sign of strength – that you care about doing a good job and keeping others happy. With a management plan, stress doesn’t have to hold you back – it can even inspire you to achieve great things.
Join us throughout November on the Youthline blog, where we’ll be exploring some healthy ways to deal with stress and anxiety, and taking a look at what students can do to keep calm during exams.