Insights from Mental Health Training Provider – Simpila
When things feel too much, what do you do?
by Simpila Mental Health
“I feel agitated, my head hurts and just wish everyone would leave me alone”
Does this sound familiar? That is ok to admit. These are just some of the most common symptoms of stress and everyone at some point experiences it. In fact, 74% of people reported that they have felt so stressed they have been overwhelmed and unable to cope (Mental Health Foundation and YouGov, 2018). It isn’t surprising that more and more of us are feeling it, the world around us is changing and not to mention the pressure of the cost-of-living crisis. You are not alone, stress is real, but you can make things better.
Before we explore some techniques that could be helpful to combat stress, let’s take a closer look at why we even get stressed in the first place. Firstly, it is normal, we are only human, and it is a natural response to having pressure and stress applied to us. And secondly it isn’t always bad to feel some stress, it can be motivating.
But why do we sometimes feel that things get too much? Like we can’t cope with it?
I like to think of it as being, we all carry an invisible container around with us which represents how much stress we can go through each day. Every time a stress is applied to us, our container fills up a little bit more. There is a limit to what we can take on, and this limit is determined by our levels of vulnerability. (Mental Health First Aid England, 2022).
We can’t see our own containers; we can feel it though. If we take a moment to check-in with ourselves first thing in the morning and think, how big is my container today? How full is it? We can start to tune in to how we are really feeling, take control and plan to make things better.
Brain dumping can be cathartic. Taking a pen and scribbling down on a piece of paper everything in your mind, don’t overthink it, just let your pen do the talking. Once you start to slow down with dumping your thoughts, read it back, place a star next to anything causing the most stress. Ask yourself; what needs my attention now? What can I change? Can someone help me with this? Where can I get more support? You may find this a positive step to lighten the load and give you some breathing space.
Dedicating some time to focus on YOU can be a fantastic way to increase the size of your container or create more space. Take a look at the ’10 keys to happier living’ https://actionforhappiness.org, here you can find some brilliant ways to look after yourself, lower stress and live a happier lifestyle. Challenge yourself, why not try something new.
We know that stress is normal but what causes us to feel stress? One of the most common causes of stress is work-related, in a study conducted on adults it was reported that 79% of those asked said they felt it often. Of those who said they were feeling stressed, 51% reported also feeling depressed and 61% anxious, (Statista, 2020). It is difficult to ignore the impact that this can have on absenteeism but also presenteeism in the workplace. The Office for National Statistics (ONS) Labour Force Survey has found that 17.5 million working days were lost last year (2021) due to mental health related sickness absence.
Do you feel ready to take some positive steps to support your employees? Help to create a happier and healthier workplace for all? We can help.
Simpila is a consulting and training company focused on helping companies create happy and healthy workplaces through gradual cultural change. We have partnered with various small and large businesses from QinetiQ, British Airways to HR companies offering Mental Health First Aid & Refresher Training (MHFA), Mental Health Awareness Training, Mental Health First Aid Champion Training, along with also offering many bespoke mental health training courses (https://www.simpila.com/awareness-courses/#mentalhealthawarenessformanagers).
We would love the opportunity to work with you and your team by providing training, resources and creating a plan to make a difference. We have something for everyone whether you have a small team or a larger organisation, we work with you and your team to provide a service that is right for your needs.
If this is something you are interested in, please feel free to reach out and we can discuss more.
Louisa Downs, Mental Health Trainer and Wellbeing Business Consultant. Simpila Mental Health. www.simpila.com