How does stress affect your relationships?

Stress can have a significant affect on you.  It can be sneaky and silent.  You think you have control, but in reality you don’t have as much as you think.

What is stress?  It’s your body’s reaction to any change that requires a physical, mental or emotional adjustment or response.  Stress can come from any situation or thought that makes you feel frustrated, angry, nervous, or anxious.

As you can see, stress is necessary and in the right amounts, can be helpful.  Stress gets you out of bed in the morning; it makes you prepare for that presentation or difficult conversation.  It’s that feeling of urgency or motivation that drives you to respond.

It’s your body’s way of protecting you. When working properly, it helps you stay focused, energetic, and alert. In emergency situations, stress can save your life—giving you extra strength to defend yourself, for example, or spurring you to slam on the brakes to avoid an accident or too jump out of the way of a car as you cross the road.

However, too much stress, that is out of your control, or that goes on for a long period is certainly not good for you.  Stress has been linked to many illnesses and diseases such as Diabetes, Cancer, Auto immune disorders, Musculo-skeletal pain and injuries as well as generally decreasing your immune system so you catch more bugs.

Stress has many negative affects on the body, here are just a few;

  • Increased stress on your cardio vascular system
  • Inability to think clearly
  • Poor judgment
  • Moodiness
  • Inability to relax
  • Pessimistic thinking
  • Feeling overwhelmed
  • Poor sleep
  • It can increase or decrease your appetite
  • Aches and pains
  • Physical feelings of anxiety (butterflies, stomach upset, nausea, frequent colds)
  • Avoidant behavior
  • Procrastination
  • Using alcohol or other drugs to excess

As you can see too much stress affects you and your body in many ways, it has cognitive, emotional physical and behavioral affects. All of which decrease your well being, performance and results. Next time we will go through how each Communication style responds to stress and what you can do to dial back the stress and increase your well being.

Until next time, Care, Connect and be a Courageous Communicator.  Let’s change the world we live in one conversation at a time.