Stress Awareness Month 2020 is an annual event that has been held every April since 1992. Millions around the UK experience stress and statistics shows that at some point last year, 74% of us have felt so stressed that we have felt unable to cope. At GreenBox, this is a cause that is near and dear to our hearts. So, a big part of why we started GreenBox was to unleash the stress-relieving power of the plant. Our ethos is to help people live healthier and happier lives through natural remedies and wellness advice. We feel managing stress and raising awareness about it is so important.
What is stress?
Stress is our psychological, emotional and physical response to pressure. According to the Mental Health Foundation, it’s the degree to which we “feel overwhelmed or unable to cope as a result of pressures that are unmanageable”. We feel there are too many demands, and that we have too few resources to cope. That pressure can arise from external factors including life events, illness, or living conditions (i.e. working from home because of COVID-19). It can also be related to family, study, or the demands we place on ourselves. The ability to cope varies from person to person and what one person finds stressful may not be a problem for someone else.
How can it affect us?
Stress can affect the way we think, the way we feel and the way we behave. It can also exacerbate existing mental health problems too. Recognising the signs and symptoms of stress will help you figure out ways of coping and save you from adopting unhealthy coping methods. Stress Awareness Month 2020 is a great reminder to us all that personal stress affects us all. And we can all learn how to better deal with it.
At stressful times, we tend to be driven by our emotions and opinions, which create a vicious cycle by fuelling each other. Our emotions strengthen our opinions, which in turn, intensify our emotions. That leads to impulsive acts and unhelpful longer-term consequences, which helps to maintain the overall problem.
To restore balance, we can:
- Reduce demands on our time (where possible)
- Develop effective coping mechanisms
- Do both
We have found taking a daily meditation has by far been the biggest help to handle the daily stresses in life. We are big fans of the Calm App, which provides daily 12 minute instructor-led mindfulness sessions fittingly called the “Daily Calm”. Mindfulness is a meditation philosophy involving paying attention in a particular way to the present moment without judgement. The actual skills might be simple, but because it is so different to how our minds normally behave, it takes a lot of practice. It is worth giving a try!
Other great coping mechanisms
Here are some really easy things to introduce into your day to day routine. First and foremost, look for the good in things! It’s a great opportunity to shift one’s frame of mind and it can really help deal with the daily stresses. Second, take some “me time”. We work long hours in the UK, but prioritising time for oneself has to be a priority. Finally, take control! Much of the experience of stress is about feeling out of control. So, reduce those demands on your time, and get back in the driving seat of life.
3 stress-busting plant based recommendations
Of course, we have some plant-based suggestions as well. Many of the natural ingredients in the products stocked at GreenBox are thought to have calming effects. Examples include lavender, peppermint and CBD.
#1 stress-buster: CBD
OKI 600mg CBD Oil Drops hail from surfer-loving California. It’s an ideal CBD starter product that is sure to assist you in your battle with stress. OKI is one of our favourite CBD brands.
#2 stress-buster: lavender & peppermint
Infinity CBD Calm Stick Roll On is rich in peppermint and lavender essential oils. This is a fast-acting soother for muscles and the mind. We love Infinity CBD’s products and are among the most innovative in the market today.
#3 stress-buster: borage seed oil
Don’t stress about those dry hands as MGC Derma brings us this Calming Hand Cream. It’s infused with borage seed oil which offers quick relief for dry and tender hands from all that hand washing you are doing due to COVID-19.
Other stress awareness events
- 5th May 2020: Stress Awareness Day
- 1st week of November 2020: International Stress Awareness Week
Let’s make international stress management a key issue and let’s knock stress out together!