According to Dr Sarah Edelman, clinical psychologist and author of ‘Change Your Thinking', anxiety is an internal emotional state, which can sometimes develop into a condition, while stress refers to demands coming from our environment.
When stress becomes a persistent issue and something that feels beyond our control, that’s when it can start to affect our mental health and lead to depression.
Fight or flight
The body’s immediate response to perceiving threat is the fight-or-flight response. This includes increased heartbeat, rapid breathing, trembling, pale skin and dilated pupils.
Genes, personality, and early life experiences play an important role in how resilient we are when dealing with stress.
Get to the root cause
It can feel impossible to tackle chronic stress.
First, stop and take stock. Delegate if you are buckling under too many demands. Start talking to others if you need emotional support. Put off making any non-essential decisions until you feel clear-headed. Once you feel in a clear frame of mind, try and identify what’s causing you this acute stress and consider whether you need to make some key changes in your life.