Are you stressed?

This International Stress Awareness Week Dr Sam Sadler, deputy clinical lead from TalkingSpace Plus, has been talking stress - and what you can do to feel better. Listen again via BBC Sounds.

Are you stressed?

TalkingSpace Plus is helping people to identify and tackle stress.

The Oxfordshire talking therapy service is to host a series of drop-in sessions and Dr Sam Sadler, deputy clinical lead for Oxfordshire’s talking therapy service TalkingSpace Plus, has been speaking to BBC Radio Oxford about stress, and what you can do about it.

Listen Again on BBC Sounds from 1hr 10 minutes.

What causes stress?

Stress is our body’s automated response to pressure, commonly known as the ‘fight or flight’ response. The causes of stress can be complex and include life events such as taking care of a sick or elderly friend or family member alongside work pressures, chronic illness or injury, emotional problems such as depression, anxiety, anger, grief, guilt, low self-esteem or a traumatic event such as being the victim of any sort of crime or a natural disaster.

What are the signs of stress?

It is important to consider how you are feeling so you can notice differences in how you might be thinking, your emotional state or any changes in your behaviours.  Helpful things to be looking out for might include:

  • Low mood
  • Anxious feelings
  • Physical health issues
  • Anger, irritability, or restlessness
  • Feeling overwhelmed, unmotivated, or unfocused
  • Trouble sleeping or sleeping too much
  • Racing thoughts or constant worry
  • Problems with your memory or concentration
  • Making unhelpful or bad decisions
  • Avoiding/not doing things you usually enjoy

How can we manage stress?

There are lots of ways to manage stress, assuming we can spot when stress is building up. However, some of the things we might end up doing can be unhelpful; -such as drinking more alcohol, taking recreational drugs, smoking, a change in our eating and general self-care patterns.  Some things we might do may be helpful in the short term but can become a problem longer term – such as ‘delaying things’ until you feel a bit better.

All of these options are very human and understandable, but ultimately the most effective way to deal with stress is to acknowledge it and work through its cause wherever possible and then its effects.

Sometimes this is possible alone, or with the support of trusted friends, family or colleagues but sometimes you might need help which looks slightly different.

Need support?

TalkingSpace Plus can give you a confidential space to think about what is happening for you and support you to feel better. Employment support is also available if you need it and professionals are trained to consider long term health conditions in any work we might do with you. Early support is crucial so don’t wait to get in contact.

If you believe you might benefit from some free support via the NHS, because you cannot quite get to a place where you feel yourself again, call TalkingSpace Plus on 01865 901222 or visit the TalkingSpace Plus website.

Drop into Ark-T

TalkingSpace Plus in collaboration with Ark-T centre will be offering drop-in sessions at the Venue on 242b Barns Road, Oxford, every first Monday of the month to answer any questions related to psychological and employment support available and guide you on how to access the service.

TalkingSpace Plus helps people experiencing a wide range of problems and from many different backgrounds. We understand that treatment needs to fit with people’s circumstances, culture, and religion, and translation services are available at assessment and during treatment.

Next date: Monday 5th of December 2022.

Find out more on the Ark-T website.

How do you rate this page?

Thank you for your feedback

Follow us on social media to stay up to date

We are sorry you did not find this page helpful

Tell us how we can improve this page

Published: 8 November 2022