All Articles Tagged "stress"

5 Signs You Need a Pause and What to Do About It

July 5th, 2014 - By Toya Sharee
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By Ms. Rachael O’Meara ,From YourTango

Learn about the 5 key signs you need a pause and tips on how to refresh and renew.

Despite my success working in the Internet industry for more than a decade, I felt like a failure at work. I was overworked, stressed about every minor detail and quickly burning out. The more I tried to improve “my performance,” the worse I seemed to do. Everyone told me I wasn’t doing well in my role, which set off a mental tailspin.

With an eroding confidence, I sure wasn’t going to look for a new job, even though I was desperate to find one. I decided the best option was to take a break, or as I like to say, a pause. For how long, remained to be determined. I just knew that I needed a pause to unwind and figure out how I could live a happier life.

What led a professional like me to this breaking point? There were five signs. Unfortunately, I had ignored every one. They whispered day and night. You need a pause.

1. You used to love your job, now you loathe it.

Do you dread waking up and going to work most days? Was this previously enjoyable for you? Most of us spend our majority of time at work, so if you’re not happy here, it’s a problem you need to address.

2 The boss tells you, “It’s not working out.”

Worse than dating! Is your manager giving you specific feedback to improve? If the answer is yes, and you’ve shown no marked improvement, it’s time to assess if your role is a good fit. A pause could be just the right next step to figure this out.

3. An intervention separates you from your work or technology.

Has a loved one, friend or family member spoken up about your addiction to your work, phone or computer? Are you missing out on important life events because you’re too busy working or checking Facebook? It may be time to step away and see if what you’re working on is as critical (or valuable) as you think.

It’s too hot to suffer from burnout. Visit YourTango to read about more signs you need to put the world on pause and take care of yourself.

Dating: How To Stop Over-Analyzing Your New Relationships

June 7th, 2014 - By Madame Noire
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From Your Tango

Suffering from over-think? Here’s how to stop over-analyzing your dates.

“Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar.” -Sigmund Freud

Have you ever started dating someone and begun overanalyzing how things are going? I know I have. In the beginning stages of a new relationship it can be so hard to not go over everything repeatedly in a vain attempt to either gain control or divine the future.

Your decisions about your reality heavily shape what you will do next. After too much analysis, you’re often damned if you do and damned if you don’t.

Here’s why: if you decide things are going super well, you can get clingy and make the other person feel suffocated. If you decide things are going horrible, you can prematurely shut things down or unintentionally give off the vibe that you aren’t interested. This is why it’s doubly important to take a “wait and see” approach when it comes to a new relationship.

Here are some things to remember about relationship over-analysis:

Your analysis does not equal control.

Often we overanalyze when we’re feeling a lack of control over a situation. It’s as if the analysis helps us reconcile the inability to control someone else.

Visit Your Tango to read more about why Elizabeth Stone says over-thinking your relationship may leave you stressed out and alone.

A New Study Says You’re More Stressed At Home Than At Work

May 27th, 2014 - By Lauren R.D. Fox
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Usually during their morning commute, some people are counting down to the hours where they will be able to leave work and head back home.those “fun-filled” after work activities might not be so fun.

Pennsylvania State University (PSU) research finds people are more stressed at home than at work. Forbes shares, PSU researched 122 people for their study, swabbing their cheek three times a day to measure cortisol levels. Coritsol is a stress hormone and rises when people find themselves in stressful situations. PSU also asked their participants to rate their moods at work and home.

PSU found:

“The surprising finding was that people’s cortisol levels were much lower when they were at work than when they were at home. And this difference seemed to span all socioeconomic statuses. When it came to people’s own perceptions, there was an interesting gender gap: Men said they were happier at home than at work, but women reported being happier at work. This may be partly due to the fact that, although it’s evened out a bit in recent years, there’s still somewhat of an imbalance in household responsibilities.”

The university also concluded, work has become therapeutic because people know exactly what they have to do and their tasks are more team-oriented. Despite constantly relaying frustrations about work, other studies have noted full-time work betters a person’s mental and physical states.

The Washington Post reports sociologist Sarah Damaske theory on this study; Damaske notes mothers are not becoming workaholics because their home life is stressful. She claims the multitasking that comes with home and personal lives, make people excessively exhausted. “I don’t think it’s that home is stressful. When you’re home on Saturday, you’re not working. You go to the park, catch up on laundry. The day goes at a slower pace. I think it’s the combination of the two, work and home, that makes home feel so stressful to people during the work week.”

The suggestion to change the stress levels at home is in fact to become more like Millenials. This generation of people is more known to ask important questions regarding their well-being rather than be at risk for an image. Damaske notes, “But the more we learn, the more we listen to people, like Millennials, who want to find meaningful work, don’t want to be so devoted to work that they don’t have time for their outside lives, the more we can change.”

Can you relate to the outcome of this study? Let us know how you feel in the comment section!

Life Ain’t Always Pretty: How To Deal With The Bad And The Ugly

February 20th, 2014 - By Brande Victorian
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Source: Getty

Source: Getty

Life can throw some pretty big curve balls at you no matter how hard you try to stay on the straight and narrow. Just look at Gospel-singing duo Mary Mary. From the preview of Season 3 of their hit WE tv show “Mary Mary,” we see Tina and Erica will be struggling with just about every one of life’s problems imaginable, from infidelity, to the death of a loved one, to career issues that put pressure on their family relationship. To say these ladies are going through it would be putting it mildly, but in the end they always manage to stay strong and pull through together.

With “Mary Mary” returning to the small screen Thursday, February 27th, we came up with a few tips for dealing with life when there’s not a lot of good and plenty of bad and ugly so you can come out triumphant just like Tina and Erica.

Feeling Anxious? How To Overcome Anxiety In The Workplace

January 13th, 2014 - By Caressa Sanford
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Those of us with anxiety often play out a compilation of narratives in which the worst that can happen ultimately does. These thoughts are sometimes triggered by presentations, projects, and challenges at work. Whereas these thoughts may be difficult to work through, it is not impossible. Here are a few tips and tricks that have helped me to overcome anxiety in the workplace.

Own It! I’m nervous. I’m worried. I’m scared. Acknowledge the feelings you have, and do not run from them. By accepting that you are in a vulnerable state and deciding to work through it, you stop yourself from freaking out ABOUT freaking out. Now all you have to do is figure out how to work through these feelings.

Take a Few Deep Breaths. How annoying is it when you are upset or talking faster than you can think and someone says, “Calm down. Take a breath?” Pretty annoying. However when it comes to one of my work panic attacks, taking deep breaths helps me to regain control over my mind and body. Now I can think clearly, and see that I am more than likely making my situation bigger than it is. The only breathing technique that has worked for me is inhaling slowly through my nose, and then exhaling slowly through my mouth. However, there are numerous breathing techniques that may be a better fit for you. Try researching a few, and practicing them at a time when you don’t feel anxiety so you are equipped with techniques when you really need them.

Get Physical. If you have a few minutes before that meeting or even better a meal time before the big presentation you are dreading, get up and stretch or walk. Just get moving! It’s hard to focus on what “could” happen, when you are present in the moment. Physical activity forces your mind to pay attention to something else. And a little exercise never hurts.

Go Outside. If you can get some physical activity in outside, even better! Nature always calms me down and helps me to wheel in all of those mind-racing thoughts in. Even if you only have five minutes, I highly recommend getting some fresh air. Connecting with nature helps me to acknowledge my life’s purpose and not to sweat the small stuff.

Negate Negative Thoughts With Positive Thoughts. Through years of practice, I am finally getting good at pointing out self-depreciating thoughts and negating them with positive and true affirmations. As soon as “You can’t do that” pops in my head, I negate it with “Why not me? I am more than capable.” Or, more often than not, I’ll turn to a Bible verse: “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”

Now these are just some of the ways that I make it through my trying times at work. I know how it feels to constantly feel like it’s the end of the world when partaking on a new career journey, leading a project, giving a presentation and other various experiences that come along with pursuing successful careers. Although these tips work for me (most of the time), they may not work for you, but the only way you can be defeated is if you quit. Research tips for overcoming anxiety, read inspirational books, and if it feels like more than you can handle, don’t go it alone. Seek attention from a mental health professional. Whatever steps you take, do not give up on yourself. There is purpose for your life, and you can have your career and life dreams, as long as you don’t let fear stop you.

9 Ways Turning 30 Makes Your Body Rebel

November 6th, 2013 - By Toya Sharee
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Someone told me that one day that I would start having to take better care of my body because once I hit 30, my carelessness would start to show. I should have listened. For the first 29 years of my life, I’ve eaten what I’ve wanted, considered exercise optional and subscribed to the P. Diddy philosophy that I’ll sleep when I die after I work hard and party even harder. But with turning 30, I’ve noticed my body listening less and less when it comes to me telling it what I want it do.  Here are nine ways I noticed my body is slowly turning against me:

Good Eats, Good Mood: Personal Choice Makes A Lunch Break Great

October 9th, 2013 - By Ann Brown
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Can lunch change your mood? It sure can, according to a new study shows that how you spend your midday break matters less than whether or not you have the choice to lunch on your own terms, reports The Huffington Post.

In other words, the best lunch break is one in which you decide how to spend it. Don’t let your job dictate that you lunch at your desk when you really want to take a break outdoors, for example. “Need for autonomy is a fundamental psychological need, and past research shows that a feeling of autonomy is energizing on its own,” study co-author Dr. Ivona Hideg, assistant professor of organizational behavior at Wilfrid Laurier University’s School of Business in Canada, explained The Huffington Post. “More specifically to lunch breaks, having autonomy over our lunch break activities gives us an opportunity to utilize our time in a way that suits us the best.”

The study surveyed 103 administrative workers at a large university, asking them how they spent their lunch breaks over a 10-day period, The Atlantic reported. Then, the researchers asked each person’s co-workers how tired that person seemed to be by the end of each work day.

“We found that a critical element was having the freedom to choose whether to [work through lunch] or not,” study co-author Dr. John Trugakos, associate professor in the department of management at the University of Toronto, wrote. “The autonomy aspect helps to offset what we had traditionally thought was not a good way to spend break time.”

There were some common links between lunchtime activities and levels of fatigue. If you participate in relaxing activities during lunch that you personally choose, it may lead to the least amount of reported fatigue at the end of the day. Doing work during lunch may result in appearing more tired. This is reduced when the choice to work was your own personal decision. Surprisingly, socializing during lunch may actually lead to higher levels of fatigue if you’re with people you can’t necessarily be yourself with, such as certain co-workers or your boss.

This study will be published in the October issue of the Academy of Management Journal.

Sanity Above All: Putting Yourself Before Your Stress

September 12th, 2013 - By Nicole Akoukou Thompson
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Those 24-hour days beg for a few more, in order to cater to our back-breaking list of duties, obligations and responsibilities. The lives that we lead are busy and complex. Most of us are so caught up in the fray that we don’t take the time to eat properly, keep our homes tidy, exercise our exhausted bodies, or tend to our mental health. The simple fact is that the complete 24 hours of living, nonstop media consumption, and constant interactions with others –particularly negative interactions, can be dangerous to us. The mind, unique in its ability to cope, adapt, thrive and surprise, still needs positive conditioning even in spite of its miraculous nature. The ingestion of stress, hard living, mistreatment and sleep deprivation can cause the mind to shatter or break – evident when people have breakdowns that others slowly saw coming.

Some advice: choose sanity above all else. Switch off the television, computer, or cell phone; dump your hostile significant other; distance yourself from your gossipy co-worker; cut your work hours when they’re well above the required amount; move to a home that has less maintenance; hire a babysitter for some alone time; read a book; take a vacation; listen to a new artist; become an artist; eat new food; feed your soul; write a poem; write a song; go to the beach–basically, make some time for yourself. This concept isn’t about irresponsibility but about examining the things that we decide are most important in our lives, the things that we’ve decided to deposit most of our energy in –which are usually things that are a bit disabling. Tending to these seemingly important matters will means nothing if it becomes detrimental to your health.

The effect of stress on our sanity and even our physical health is unbelievable –heart attacks, strokes, etc. Anxiety, lack of sleep, and anything in the surrounding category affects our immune system, leaving us exposed and vulnerable to diseases and viruses. Stress also makes vices such as alcoholism, drug abuse, and other risky behaviors more attractive, seen as a relief to the pressures in our lives. Placing sanity above all other obligations is a lifestyle choice, one that can mean the difference between life and death for some. Introducing mind and heart healthy habits are beneficial (i.e., taking a few extra moments out of our day to take a break when feeling overwhelmed). Decide that it’s important for your health to put some of the “big” things that trouble you on the backburner, even if it means that you’re spending a little less time being social or taking care of business. Obligations will always be there, why not take the time to take care of yourself so that every waking moment isn’t filled with anxiety?

Ciara Hints That Relationship Critics Nearly Pushed Her To ‘Insanity’

August 27th, 2013 - By Jazmine Denise Rogers
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You’ve probably noticed that Ciara has become more open with fans regarding her personal life than she has been in the past. According to CiCi, this is no coincidence. The “Body Party” singer recently shared with Paper Magazine that trying to maintain such a private life and holding back on so much nearly drove her off of the deep end. Check out some highlights from her interview to see what she has to say about her relationship critics and why she no longer worries about what other people think.

On her relationship with Future:

“He’s very understanding. And he’s my best friend. It’s important to have a feeling that you can talk about anything and know a person’s going to be there and support you. When we’re together, it’s not about who we are. I feel very normal, very safe and loved.”

On relationship critics:

“Being able to speak about it is a whole different thing for me. I’m not thinking or caring too much about what anybody has to say anymore. Once you start over-thinking and worrying, you start getting close to insanity. I want my sanity and a life and happiness.”

On her latest musical project:

“The album is light and upbeat. There’s a lot of love in it — a lot of heart and passion. It reflects the spirit and energy that I’m feeling right now. What people are hearing is my true self-expression and the energy I’m living.”

On showing more of herself to fans:

“I thought it was better to be private. You need to live more. If you worry so much about things, your head is going to explode. Just live. Something has to give. I was holding back so much that I wasn’t letting myself explore and live.”

On where her career is headed:

“I’m making choices I feel good about. It definitely feels good to get love from my fans. I work so hard. I’m hoping to share with other young girls, and even men, to never give up. And I feel like my journey’s just beginning. On this journey, there’s much I haven’t done. I still feel like a little kid. I still have my youthful energy and spirit. I’m super excited by my future.”

Turn the page for more photos from her fab photo shoot. 

15 Ways Your Marriage Is At Risk In Your First Year Of Having A Baby

August 6th, 2013 - By Julia Austin
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Source: Shutterstock

In a relationship, anything that brings you two closer suddenly adds pressure that could drive you apart: it happens when you move in together, when you get engaged and when you get married. But when you have your first baby, the brings-you-closer effects can be far outweighed by the drives you apart. So you need to be twice as prepared to battle the distancing effects.