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Working together to tackle stress

In the fast-paced, demanding world that we live in, it is easy to feel under pressure. Life throws a lot at us and we can all feel down from time to time. It’s just part of life and we all get on with it.

But when these pressures or demands become excessive, and you can’t cope with them, then you can become stressed.

For many people, stress is a significant problem that seriously affects their daily lives and the lives of those around them.

Stress is the most common mental health problem faced by people throughout the world. Two in five of us will experience stress at some stage in our lives and seven out of 10 of us know someone who has it.

So what is stress? For most people, it involves anxiety or depression, or a combination of both. It becomes a problem when you can’t get rid of it, even though you try. You feel you are losing control of your life. You feel that you can’t cope with things that others can deal with.

There are a number of tell-tale signs that a person may be suffering from stress. Physical symptoms include tiredness and headaches. Other signs include panic attacks, poor concentration, worry and feelings of worthlessness.

The range of signs and symptoms of stress include:

  • memory problems
  • inability to concentrate
  • poor judgment
  • seeing only the negative
  • anxious or racing thoughts
  • constant worrying
  • depression or general unhappiness
  • anxiety and agitation
  • moodiness, irritability, or anger
  • feeling overwhelmed
  • loneliness and isolation
  • other mental or emotional health problems
  • aches and pains
  • diarrhoea or constipation
  • nausea, dizziness
  • chest pain, rapid heart rate
  • loss of sex drive
  • frequent colds or flu
  • eating more or less
  • sleeping too much or too little
  • withdrawing from others
  • procrastinating or neglecting responsibilities
  • using alcohol, cigarettes, or drugs to relax
  • nervous habits (e.g. nail biting, pacing).

The good news is that there’s a lot that can be done to support people struggling with stress.

NHSGGC’s stress in the workplace policy has been developed to support staff to deal with issues that contribute to stress at work and in the outside world. It encourages staff wellbeing by giving information on techniques and services which help individuals to cope with pressure and stress and equipping all staff, including managers, with tools to identify the risk of stress and intervene at an early stage.

The full policy is available on the A Healthier Place to Work section of the website or www.nhsggc.org.uk/staffhealth


We’re here to support you

Staff should be aware of the signs and symptoms of stress as outlined in this article, and know how to receive support if required. The organisation has put in place a range of measures to reduce the risk of staff being affected by stress in the workplace, but staff should be aware that stress can often originate from life outside of work. The organisation will do all it can to support you if you are suffering from stress.