Get to know your stress signals to build self/stress-awareness

To understand your stress, it’s crucial to be aware what signals stress can send you. That is the first and the most important step to take in stress management . Start observing your body and this will already help you to „leave” your head and create body connection and awareness. Take a look at this division of stress signals with a metaphor of volcano. I created it for you to have a pleasant read and start getting acquainted with your stress. It’s important that you don’t fight with your stress but approach it with acceptance.

Dreaming volcano – stress signals

Signals in category of dreaming volcano appear in the body instantly and they are not serious. Those are often connected with the motivating stress, give a big boost of energy and disappear relatively quickly. 

  • faster heart beating
  • clenching the hands
  • biting of the nails
  • sudden boost of energy
  • rubbing forehead or temples
  • covering the neck with your hands
  • short term muscle tension
  • dry mouth
  • tic disorders 
  • cold feet or hands
  • changed (often faster and shallow) breath
  • sweating
  • paleness
  • butterflies in the stomach (yes, quite same as when you are in love:)
  • urge to urinate (often without a real need)
  • becoming talkative or quiet

Waking up volcano – stress signals

Those signals show that you are stressed out for a longer period of time. Volcano is waking up and signals in this category show that your body is not in balance and is calling for help.

Waking up volcano signals don’t need to lead to a serious condition, especially if you know that stressful situation is gonna last just for a while; for example you know that in 2 weeks you have your exams or important presentation. Volcano doesn’t need to be woken up causing long term problems. However if you ignore those stress signals for a longer time and you will not do anything to bring balance to your life, your physical and mental condition will be worsening causing volcano eruption.  

Waking up volcano signals might include:

  • jaw tensions 
  • voice problems
  • unease and anxieties 
  • muscle tensions
  • having unexplained pains
  • sleeping problems
  • irritation, frustration and nervousness
  • easiness to cry
  • being reserved
  • shriek in the ears
  • tiredness
  • losing motivation
  • headaches and nausea
  • problems with concentration and remembering
  • acidic stomach
  • lower libido

Volcano eruption – stress signals

Those are warning signals which loudly say – something really bad is going on! At this moment you should contact a doctor. If he doesn’t find any medical reason for those symptoms, so most likely it is a chronic stress, which you need to take care of. Those signals might include those named in the previous categories as well as the following:

  • being forgetful 
  • aggression 
  • being mentally absent 
  • acne
  • unexplained pains
  • stomach and digestion problems
  • worsening illnesses
  • being less social
  • having lots of catastrophic thoughts, depressive episodes
  • losing motivation
  • bleeding irregularity
  • increased use of stimulants (alcohol, cigarettes etc.)

Remember that you might also experience some signs which are not named above. Here I named the most typical signs, but everybody is different and differently reacts on stress. The most important is awareness and learning the habit of self observation – of the body and thoughts (to observe them not to analyze too much and overthink). 

Second step is observation of thoughts and reasons of appearance of those signals. They might be caused by some limiting beliefs which you hold deep inside. I recommend you to download free stress management table to work with it more thoroughly. Just sign to a newsletter on my page (I am not very active with it yet, but I promise I will become soon). For sure you will get a table to work with!

What kind of stress signals do you notice?

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