The phases of stress, from alarm to exhaustion

The phases of stress, from alarm to exhaustion

The phases of stress are the different stages or different levels of evolution of this problem.It must be said that stress is dynamic: it moves, it changes. Very often, and imperceptibly, it begins to progress to more serious stages that can put your life in danger.

Stress is one of the greatest evils of our time.It is now difficult to find someone who does not have a certain level of anxiety or anxiety. This problem is serious: it can lead to serious individual and collective consequences.

We live in a world where people are stressed. Especially in big cities.Stress is contagious. Therefore, we must not only pay attention to individual concerns: we must also monitor the malaise of those around us.These situations are not easy to manage. To do this, the first thing to do is to identify the phases of stress and determine if we are in the process of crossing one.

"Threats that affect our self-esteem or our self-image often cause much more anxiety than threats to our physical integrity."

-Sigmund Freud-

The alarm, the first phase of stress

In general terms, stress occurs when we face a situation that involves a threat or risk.The normal reaction of a human being, in this case, is to prepare for attack or flight.

This is accompanied by a series of physiological manifestations, during which there is a sudden release of adrenaline and cortisol.The latter is really the stress hormone. In the long run, the frequent production of these hormones can lead to serious problems.


The second phase of stress is resistance. Once you have received a stressful stimulus,a biological mechanism called "homeostasis" is activated. It is a mechanism of self-protection and self-preservationthrough which the body seeks to find a balance.

However,it happens that the stressful mechanism is still present, whether in reality or in our imagination. The body can not return to its equilibrium state.It is at this moment that the first symptoms of stress appear. These include fatigue, difficulty in getting to sleep, irritability and general discomfort.

Phase of exhaustion

If the problem continues for a long time, we enter the third phase of stress. This step indicates a more serious problem.All previous symptoms are present permanently and intensely.

During this phase, it is common to see physical diseases appear.The immune system weakens and this facilitates viral or bacterial infections.It is also common to suffer from migraines, muscle pain in different parts of the body and a very strong emotional block.

Fight stress

Each phase of stress requires different management.In the first stage, it is important to delineate and control the effect of the perceived stimulus as threatening.Once the person feels this sudden and intense fear, they must take a break to become aware of the situation.

It is important to note that there are real dangers and imaginary dangers. The most difficult to approach are these. They are permanent and have more harmful effects.It is therefore essential to define the limits of this risk or danger. To establish how it can affect us and to what extent.We must also breathe, drink a glass of water and wait for our body to relax.

In the second phase, this risk is more or less fixed. Once again, it is important to become aware of it. If we can not determine what really scares us, it does not matter. Stress can block this self-evaluation ability. The essential thing is to act.The necessary measures are: exercise and rest. These two factors will help us overcome the problem.

If a person is in the last phase, the problem becomes much more complex.It is then recommended to follow a psychotherapybecause clarifying one's emotions without external help is almost impossible. Do not be afraid to ask. The best is not to wait too long to seek this psychological support because stress can have very negative consequences.

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