Healthy and harmful stress - Mzansi Stories

Thursday, January 21


Healthy and harmful stress


Keeping a cool head


part 1

Stress is a necessary part of living. Without stressors and the demands they make, you might not face many of the challenges that lead you to complete tasks. Harmful stress i necessary. Stress can help you get things done. Healthy stress is stress that improves your mental, social and physical health.

Although stress is part of your life, it does not have to control your life. You can control the effect stressors have on you. Managing stress helps to keep a balance in one's life and prevents stressors from taking control and making you ill. In a sense, everything you do to maintain your health is a way of managing stress.

Eating well, exercising regularly and expressing your feelings are all ways in which a healthy person manages stress. Engaging in physical activities like cleaning your room, taking a walk, or just taking a break are ways of releasing tension when you are under stress. By doing something physically active you provide your body with a healthy outlet for built-up energy.

At the same time, you are able to take your mind off your problems and give yourself a chance to relax. If you are not able to do physical activities, creative activities like art, music, writing, drawing and painting will also help to reduce tension. Expressing your creativity in these ways provides an outlet for excess tension.

Humour can also be an effective way to deal with some stressful situations. When you laugh, you release built-up stress. This does not mean that you do not care about what happened, but simply that you have chosen healthy way to deal with the stress of that particular situation.

If used in moderation, humour allows you to deal quickly with a stressor and keep it in proper perspective. If, however, a person uses laughter to cover up his or her true feelings or if a person laughs inappropriately at a serious situation, humour may be an unhealthy way of coping with stress.

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