Emotional & Mental Well-being
Caring can place huge demands on you with many extra responsibilities and frustrations to deal with. Experiencing stress is a reaction to increased demands placed upon us and we all need some stress to function effectively, it’s what makes us get things done. The problem arises when there is continual or excessive stress. Stress can be detrimental to our physical and mental health and have a huge effect on our relationships. It is therefore important to be able to identify increased stress and take a proactive/preventative approach to reduce this.
Some signs and symptoms of increased stress:
- excessive smoking
- excessive drinking
- feeling of being unable to settle being on edge
- constant tiredness and lack of energy
- difficulty concentrating
- feeling low being unable to enjoy things
- feeling there are not enough hours in the day
- avoiding people family/social situations
- feeling alone and isolated
- lack of appetite/ feeling sick
- irritability/aggressiveness/anger and resentment
- extreme apathy or cynicism
- difficulty sleeping
- Recognise your source of stress and understand how it affects you, anticipate and plan for periods of stress.
- Adopt a problem solving approach and break it down into manageable components. Approach projects one stage at a time.
- Recognise and accept your own feelings. Express the way you are feeling openly with others, be aware that past experiences may affect your feelings.
- Develop new behavioural skills. Learn to say no. Avoid procrastination. ‘Do it today’. Avoid being a perfectionist. Encourage others to take self-responsibility where they can.
- Establish and make good use of social networks, draw on friends and family or seek out carers support groups.
- Ask for help and accept it when it is offered.
- Maintain a healthy lifestyle, exercise, healthy eating and change your pace, look at new skills hobbies etc.
- Organise your time – use lists and prioritise: not all things have to be done!
- Make time for yourself, if you really can’t get away, then make time in the home by spending time on a hobby, a relaxing bath, a good book etc.
- Focus on the positive.
Remember all that you have achieved!!!