What’s stressing you out?

Miss Alone

Prime VIP
At a time when a lot of youngsters are not even aware of the fact that they might be really stressed, we decode symptoms, reasons and solutions...

Ever lost your cool at the tiniest thing, and five minutes later wondered why? Sometimes small things that happen every day, like spilling water or being unable to find your socks, can send you into a flying rage. But why did you lose your cool? You are not going through any life crisis — your job doesn't require you to clock in insane hours and your personal life is looking up. What many of us don't realize is that stress can be caused by several little factors that, on the surface, seem harmless.

Your do-it-all phone is supposed to make your life easier since you can check your mail, chat with friends, play games and add final touches to your presentation, all on the go. So if anything, it should be a stress-buster, right? Wrong. The ability to stay in touch wherever you are and at any time of the day, makes it hard for you to focus on the task at hand; be it in the office, in a party or a picnic. And that phantom buzz — the feeling that your phone vibrated even when it didn't — is a classic sign of stress. People get obsessed with their phones and keep thinking about why they haven't got any calls or texts in a while. All this constantly inflates your stress.

Cubicle-free offices
Most offices today have done away with cubicles. In 'open plan' offices, everyone can see what everyone else is doing. And without realizing it, the things that your colleagues do can add to your stress. Strong perfumes, loud conversations, squeaky chair wheels or the constant prying eyes on your computer screens, can all evoke a reaction within you. Haven't we all clenched our fists in frustration and felt the need to punch the person sitting next to/across from us at least once?

Finding a quiet corner has become close to impossible, even in our homes. Throughout the day we are bombarded with noises — horns blaring in the traffic, phones ringing in the office, the passing of cars outside your bedroom, the buzz of tube lights or the hum of your computer fan. We are used to many of these noises and don't even notice them anymore, but that doesn't mean that you are immune to their effects. Constant background noises raise your blood pressure, and secretly also affect your ability to pay attention, all thanks to the build up of stress.

Rude encounters
Being hung up on by someone on the phone, told off by the auto driver or ignored by a salesperson — all these can result in stress. When you feel insulted, the thought tends to linger long after the incident has passed. This plays on your mind, and any negative thoughts can spark off stress. In the long-run, it can alter your hormones and weaken your immune system.

Automated customer assistance
Waiting for what seems like an eternity and pressing all the buttons on your keypad just to get to speak to the customer care representative is a shared irritant. These systems are designed to save companies money, but all they manage to do is steadily raise your frustration. Even though you may not use this service on a daily basis, a single call is enough to stress you out. Getting agitated during or after the call is an instant sign of this.

Bedroom lights
Finding complete darkness is difficult. It's late, you have turned off all the lights in your bedroom and drawn the curtains, but still the light from the streetlamp manages to find its way into your room. If not that, it's the bright LED air conditioner display, your glow-in-the-dark alarm clock, or simply that you have left the TV on. Sleeping eight hours a night is not enough; mind needs uninterrupted, good-quality sleep, and this is not possible with a bright stimulus.

Not paying attention to your appearance
You may pretend to not care about how you look, or how the world views you, but one frown after looking in the mirror is a sign that your appearance has an effect on your psyche. There is a strong link between how you present yourself and how the world views you. When people respond positively, you feel good, and the opposite holds true when you get negative feedback. Not being happy with how you look hits your confidence, and constantly thinking about it, leads to stress.

Gravy stain on the carpet, toys scattered everywhere, or the stack of dirty dishes in the sink. A messy living environment can make anyone irritated, especially if it feel like you are the only one who seems to give a hoot about it. Coming back to a messy house after a long day at work makes things that much more annoying. This only adds to your to-do list, no longer making your home a place where you unwind and relax.

Ever noticed how someone on a diet is easily irritated? Dieters consume fewer-than-required calories and even end up skipping meals. This sends the body into craving mode, resulting in irritation, headache and fatigue. Cheating on the diet makes you guilty, and blaming yourself for the binge trip results in enormous stress..