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Stress is not something foreign to humans. Everyone experiences stress from time to time in different circumstances in our daily activities. However, we should neither view stress as incurable nor should we take it lightly. Prolonged stress or the inability to manage stress can lead to devastating impacts on our lives. This is one of the reasons why stress is the topic that En Azman decides to discuss in his first video.

The stress issue in Malaysia can be considered very serious especially during the past year when the COVID-19 pandemic shocked our whole nation. In his video, En Azman refers to a survey done by AIA Vitality in 2019 which revealed that over 51% of Malaysians experience at least one dimension of work-related stress. This alarming rate shows how serious the issue of stress is in Malaysia.

Many people claim to know what stress is, but what exactly is stress? Stress is the non-specific response of the body to any demand made upon it. Stress can also be deemed as good or bad, depending on how the individual manages it.

Stress can be looked at in two parts; stress and stressors. Now, what are stressors? Stressors are something that tend to be out of our control. For example, when you are stuck in a traffic jam or there is a sudden pour just a few minutes after you wash your car or hang your clothes. They refer to circumstances beyond your control which we can do nothing about it. However, what we can do is how we look at the stressors.

Some of us can develop or are even born with the ability to handle stress efficiently. Many people are unaware that they are actually facing stress. Thus, it is important to know the symptoms of stress. Some of the symptoms are:

● Depression

● Headache

● Fatigue

● Frustration

● Loss of appetite

● Irritability

● Rapid heartbeat

● Inability to sleep

● Nervousness

● Anger

● High blood pressure

● Muscle aches

In the video, En Azman also emphasizes that not being able to recognize that we are facing stress is risky as the outcome of stress could be to the point of suffering a major illness. En Azman illustrates an example where, if we compare a person who is suffering a high degree of chronic stress with a person who smokes, the one with chronic stress could probably get diagnosed with cancer before the smoker.

However, bear in mind that, stress is not incurable. As a professional psychotherapist, En Azman shares a few suggestions or ways that could be practised in order to combat this problem. First and foremost, be aware of yourselves. We need to realize that we are experiencing stress so that we can take action.

Next, change your lifestyle, relationship and eating habits as these are some of the common variables that could contribute to stress. Last but not least, it is important for us to have a work-life balance. Leave work at the workplace. Try to practice not to do any work-related things after working hours. Make full use of the time after work and allow yourself to relax, unwind and refresh your minds with things other than work issues.

Finally, always remember to smile, breathe and go slowly. Stay tuned for more content under PDC!

“It’s not the load that breaks you down, it’s the way you carry it.”

~ Lou Hotlz

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