#NeverStress: What We Can Tell You About Avoiding Burnouts



Examining the causes of chronic stress and how to manage it.



Words, Peter Minkoff

Photography, Sharon Wright


Every time we turn on the TV or tune into a podcast, one of the subject matters we constantly hear about focuses on how stressed everyone is. Funny enough, what we don’t understand is that stress is not inherently a bad thing.

When your body is stressed, it triggers the fight-or-flight response which makes you faster, energized, alert and focused. According to research, if your body is under a manageable amount of stress, it’s actually a good thing that can boost your metabolism, your brain function and immune system.

However, chronic stress is another thing.


This type of stress can be too much to handle and since it can have serious physical and mental effects on the human body, it’s important to be aware enough to be able to identify and combat it. Just incase.

Keep scrolling for your crash course.


On Chronic Stress

The situations that cause stress are known as “stressors” and they can come from both external and internal factors. For instance, common external stressors are big life changes (buying a house, moving, health-related news), work or school changes (getting fired, getting promoted, studying for important exams), relationship difficulties, financial difficulties and problems with children. Some of the most common internal stressors for people around the world are pessimism, negative self-image, perfectionism, lack of flexibility, all-or-nothing attitude and chronic worry. 

On Physical Health

Stress accumulates slowly and our body is constantly trying to adapt to new levels of stress, so it can really go unnoticed. However, even if it looks like your body can deal with stress just fine, your nervous system is still going through an overload that will explode in the long run. One of the most common effects of stress on physical health is muscle tension which can result in headaches, back and neck pain and other musculoskeletal conditions. Stress also strongly affects your digestive system and it can affect the amount of nutrients your body absorbs, how quickly you digest food and how hungry you are. All of these digestion issues can result in nausea, vomiting, acid reflux or diarrhea. 

On Mental Health

Aside from the many physical issues resulting from its cause, chronic stress can also affect your mental health. There are various mental and emotional disorders that stem from stress like depression, anxiety, panic attacks and phobias. All that stress can make it hard to make decisions, focus, think clearly and remember things. People who are under chronic stress are often irritable, easily frustrated and experience frequent conflicts. While physical effects of stress may be more evident, you mustn’t ignore these psychological effects either. 


On Management Techniques

One of the best ways to manage stress (aside from finding a therapist) is exercise. Any form of physical activity can help reduce and provide you with many other benefits.

When you produce endorphins triggered by exercise, you tend to feel more confident and less depressed and anxious. Regular exercise also affects your sleep cycle which is often affected by stress, depression and anxiety. When you combine it with a clean diet, exercise can make you healthier, stronger and happier.

If you have zero experience in working out, make sure to find a good coach and invest in personal training in order to avoid injury. No matter if you choose workouts for weight loss, strength, conditioning or just want to stretch, a personal trainer will be here to aim you in the right direction and make your workouts more effective. 

You can also try other forms of stress management like meditation. This technique pushes you to relax your mind and body. It also allows you to re-examine your thoughts and feelings. Many people use meditation to shed their old patterns of behavior to be able to encourage a healthier and more relaxed state of mind that allows them to heal and find motivation and happiness. 

While not all stress is bad, it’s best to react fast to any indications of chronic stress in order to manage it quickly, easily and effectively. Luckily, now that you know what stress can do and how you can beat it, you’ll be ready to battle it as soon as it starts developing.