Everybody knows that today’s world is a stressful place to live in, by anyone’s standards. We are all experiencing huge shifts, personally and in our communities, due to the coronavirus pandemic, political changes and environmental changes too. Every family has moments of stress and worry, and these things can’t always be helped.
As a Mom, you are probably very good at taking on everybody else’s stress. Your kids are going through school and experiencing those ups and downs; you experience these highs and lows alongside them. If you work, you have your own career to worry about too. If you are married, you have to focus on your relationship, making sure it remains strong through the storms and calm seas that life will throw at you. All these things can become compounded over time.
If you have been feeling particularly stressed lately, there are surefire ways to tell that you need a break. Sometimes it’s hard to recognize these symptoms in ourselves, so here are 10 symptoms of high stress that prove you need a well-earned rest.
- Worrying about the past.
All of us have things from our pasts that we regret, but worrying incessantly about the past is a sign of high stress and anxiety. If you find yourself constantly re-hashing moments from your past, worrying about how it impacted you in the here and now, it could be a sign that your brain is in overdrive. It’s okay to feel sad or upset about a past event, but constantly replaying it in your mind on an obsessive level is not normal and is a sign you need a break.
- Being unable to sleep.
Lack of sleep can stem from many different sources, including children waking up in the night, chronic insomnia, too much caffeine or a cluttered sleeping environment. However, one common reason that people lose sleep is stress.
If you are lying awake each night with your mind racing with thoughts about what might happen tomorrow or all the tasks you have yet to complete, take a second to evaluate why that is. It could be that you are taking on too much in your life, and this is leading to a high-stress routine that is becoming detrimental to your health.
- You are unable to focus on basic tasks.
Being completely unable to focus on basic tasks and making careless mistakes is a sign of a mind that is distracted. Stress can make us feel like we are being stretched too thin; like we can’t give enough time to one thing at once, so we rush everything.
If you are usually a detail-oriented person but nowadays you find yourself slipping up on basic things, this may be a symptom of stress. Ask yourself how to manage your to-do list more calmly in order to go through your tasks without feeling distracted or rushed.
- Feeling upset or tearful at small inconveniences.
Emotions are a part of being human. When you become a parent, there are so many hormones rushing around your body and the stakes of life seem to have been irrevocably raised. It is normal to feel more easily upset when you are tired Mom.
Nevertheless, feeling upset or tearful at small inconveniences, such as losing your keys, smashing a glass or being a little late to an appointment, can be proof enough that you are highly stressed. If you feel yourself becoming wound up at the slightest problem, it’s time to intervene. What is causing you to feel so on-edge?
- Snapping at the people you love unnecessarily.
We all snap occasionally when we are tired or strung out, but if this becomes a regular occurrence, you need to evaluate the impact that stress is having on your life. If you feel irritable towards your kids or partner, or you are becoming less and less able to bite your tongue at work, it may be a symptom of an uneasy, stressed out mind.
- Hair loss.
As well as changes to your mood or sleep, you could notice physical changes when you become very stressed out in life. One common physical symptom of high stress is hair loss. If you begin to lose your hair it isn’t a guarantee that this is due to stress; it could be an issue with your nutrition, or another physical ailment. Nevertheless, hair loss is common in stressed-out people, and should be addressed with your doctor right away.
Your doctor can help you with comparing hair loss medication and with managing your stress day to day, so you can get back on the right track with your health.
- Unexplained weight loss.
Many Moms go on a journey to try to lose weight, using exercise and nutrition to achieve a healthier body size. However, an unexplained or sudden weight loss is not a good sign; it is usually a symptom of illness, either mental or physical.
Stress is often associated with unexplained weight loss because your body is in overdrive, never fully relaxing or resting. Plus, stressed people often unwittingly eat far fewer proper meals, meaning that you may lose weight without even trying.
- A tight chest.
Tight-chestedness is a common symptom of anxiety and stress. If you feel chest pains throughout the day as you run around trying to get everything done, it is certain that you need to take a break and make your routine less stressful. If you do have a tight chest most days, you must see your doctor for a diagnosis straight away.
- Chronic forgetfulness.
A stressed out brain is like a toy box overflowing with things that are all trying to fit into one small space. If you take on too much in life and become highly stressed by it all, you could become chronically forgetful.
Missing appointments, losing track of time: these are common traits of a person who has taken on too much and can’t admit it. If you are becoming more and more forgetful in your day to day life, it’s a sign that your mind needs a rest from all the weight it is being asked to take on.
- Feeling like you want to run away.
Ultimately, it is a sign of serious stress if you get the urge to just drop everything and run. You have built a life with your family that you are supposed to enjoy, but if you are taking on more than you can carry, your instincts will tell you to give up and cut loose. Of course, running away isn’t a solution to your stress, but if you feel this way right now, it can only become worse over time. Tackle your stress head-on by identifying your stressors and coming up with a solution to minimize your stress going forward.
By taking note of these symptoms, you can identify whether you are exhibiting symptoms of extreme stress. Make sure to consult your doctor before taking any measures to combat your stress!