We know that utilizing stress management techniques when things are tough is a practical way to destress. We might be practicing them more often due to recent events. It comes as no surprise that roughly 40 million adults in the United States (18 percent of the population) struggle with anxiety, especially when a worldwide pandemic impacts everyone. Many are struggling to find balance working from home, others are trying to make ends meet as essential workers while minimizing their risk of contracting an illness. 

What does that mean when we aren’t working? In order to prevent spreading Covid-19, venues we turned to for leisure have either closed or since reopened from shutdowns with vastly cut capacity. We can no longer take spontaneous trips to crowded beaches or concerts, or drop in for last-minute plans at our favorite restaurants and bars. Instead, we’re left with limited options to offset worries about our health, the well-being of our loved ones, making payments, securing our savings accounts, and the ever-shifting climate of society as well as our physical environment.

It’s easy without our prior routines to feel overwhelmed or out of control. And while we many circumstances happen beyond our control, our emotions and the ways in which we react to change and uncertainty are still within our grasp. In this article, we’ll discuss how to identify stress and anxiety, and how turning to online therapy via BetterHelp counseling is worth considering if you’re interested in improving your mental health.

How Can I tell If I’m Struggling With Anxiety Or Stress?

Everyone experiences stress from time to time. Stress is the body’s way of responding to an external cause or event known as a “stressor” and can be physical or mental. Stressors may happen once (tests, deadlines, accidents) or they can happen repeatedly. They may even be prolonged periods (such as a natural disaster or a pandemic).  Stress isn’t always a bad thing. In fact, it can even act as a motivator. But when it begins to impair your ability to function day-to-day, it can be a danger not only to yourself but to others, at home and at work.

No matter the culprit, stress occurs as a result of an event and often dissipates once the catalyzing event resolves or comes to an end. Anxiety is the body’s learned reaction to stress and can occur without the presence of a stressor or a threat. Your body may be anticipating the occurrence of a familiar or even non-existent stressor.

Though individuals experience physical and emotional symptoms in varying degrees, you may experience these when it comes to anxiety or stress:

  • excessive headaches, migraines
  • muscle tension, physical aches
  • nausea or vomiting
  • irritability, sadness
  • poor memory, focus, or concentration
  • high blood pressure, trouble breathing
  • restlessness, insomnia

Unaddressed stress symptoms can develop into subsisting anxiety that interferes with your physical health and everyday life. Over time, the continuing strain on your body can become chronic and contribute to serious health problems like cardiovascular disease, digestive issues, and mental illness such as anxiety disorder or depression. If you are overwhelmed or feel that you cannot cope, it’s very possible you are also experiencing anxiety.

How Can I Manage Stress?

It’s important to identify what situations or conditions trigger your stress and to recognize if a pattern exists between your body’s responses. Be observant and take notes on your thoughts and emotions in addition to recording your daily routine during periods of stress and anxiety. 

A consistent routine that incorporates physical activity, good nutrition, and regular sleep can vastly improve your body’s emotional capacity and response to stress. If you notice you’re feeling more anxious or unsettled on days you haven’t slept well, eaten enough, or exercised, make it a goal to prioritize routine, and see if it improves your mood.

Pick up a hobby or learn new relaxation techniques to use more often. Scheduling regular times to relax with healthy activities provides you with a chance to rejuvenate as well as to prioritize your well-being.

Ask for help. If you’re feeling overloaded with responsibilities and tasks, communicate with your loved ones and peers. They may be able to lessen your load and help you better manage your time in order to regain control and balance. You can also seek professional help from someone like a BetterHelp therapist who will listen to your concerns and help you create a plan to implement efficient coping mechanisms.

The concept of receiving counseling has vastly changed over the past year with social distancing impacting the feasibility and safety of physical appointments. As such, many who want to improve their mental health are now turning to online therapy counseling platforms like BetterHelp.

Why Should I Use BetterHelp If I’m Seeking Help?

As the largest online counseling platform worldwide, BetterHelp helps connects people with thousands of affordable, licensed, and experienced therapists who can help identify solutions to problems and life challenges while keeping conversations confidential. With counselors specialized in specific areas such as anxiety, relationships, family matters, depression, addictions, eating, trauma, anger, LGBT matters, grief, and more, you’ll be able to speak with someone who understands what you are going through as BetterHelp will match you with someone who fits your objectives and preferences. You’ll be able to match with a different counselor if you find it’s not a great fit; BetterHelp understands that therapy is personal.

With the assistance of technology, conversations can happen through chat, phone, or video sessions at any time of the day, 24/7, making BetterHelp more accessible than traditional therapy. This can be extremely comforting during times when your anxiety seems unmanageable on your own.

If stress and anxiety are preventing you from achieving your goals and you aren’t sure where to start, BetterHelp might be a good fit for you. Happiness is within your reach. It could be as close as a few clicks with online therapy.

For more information about BetterHelp and their services, click here:  https://www.facebook.com/BetterHelp/.