If You See These Signs, It Is Time to Take a Break

If You See These Signs, It Is Time to Take a Break

Managing your work, family, and personal life, trying to find balance in the daily hassles you encounter can become overwhelming to your body and mind. In response, your body develops certain symptoms, these physical symptoms are collectively identified as signs of physical stress.

Stress is everywhere and it affects everyone, over 7 million Nigerians suffer from stress and stress-related issues. While a little stress is fine and can be beneficial, too much stress can affect your physical health negatively – to an extent, your life.

Stress affects both mind and body, however, for this article, we’ll be focusing on the signs of physical stress, its major causes, and how to manage and cope with these signs.

What Is Physical Stress?

Physical stress is a normal bodily reaction to changes or challenges whether they are real or perceived. When you experience such challenges, a chemical reaction occurs in your body that allows you to respond appropriately to the challenge. This reaction is known as the “Fight or Flight Response“.

Your bodily responses help you to adjust to respond appropriately to challenges. Physical stress can be beneficial to you when it alerts you of unpleasant situations or motivate you. A good example of when stress is beneficial is when you have an interview, a physical stress response will hello you to stay awake to prepare well. Physical stress can also be harmful to you when the challenges continue for an extended time without relief or relaxation.

Signs of Physical Stress

Physical stress affects your daily life, but because people manage stress differently, the physical symptoms of stress can be different in people. However, some symptoms have been identified to be common to physical stress:

When stress is left untreated for an extended period of time, it often becomes more life-threatening. And if still not treated, can develop serious physical health complications such as:

  • Back pain
  • Worsening asthma symptoms or any other chronic disease an individual has
  • Increases risk of hypertension, stroke, and heart attack

Chronic Physical stress can affect your entire body by increasing the risk of certain diseases and reducing your quality of life.

What Are the Causes of Physical Stress?

As stated earlier, physical stress develops from our daily experiences and challenges. Now since people have different experiences and challenges and also react to them differently, the causes of physical stress in people also differ. An instance is, someone could be overwhelmed by a traffic jam while another turns on his car air conditioner and turn on music, making the experience less inconvenient.

Some factors able to develop physical stress could be what we are already used to but experienced with increased intensity or it could be a completely new challenging factor. Major causes of physical stress are streamlined as:

1. Financial Problems

When you find yourself feeling guilty after buying non-essential things, feeling anxious and worrying about money, and frequently arguing with loved ones about money, there’s a chance that your stress is financially caused.

2. Work

Physical stress as a result of work is often characterised by frequent rapid heartbeat severe nervousness, sweaty or sweaty hands and legs when carrying out a specific project or assignment at work. Job dissatisfaction also plays a role here.

3. Personal Relationships

There are many causes of stress in personal relationships – social media inclusive. The natural urge to compare yourself with others can lead to the stress of feeling inferior or inadequate.

Abuse or control in a relationship, loss of a loved one, moving to a new home, lack of communication and not being able to spend much time with a loved one are other common stressors.

4. Daily Life Hassles

Day-to-day hassles are common to us such as forgetting your keys at work, misplacing an item, running late, and other common inconveniences. Normally, they are inconvenience you often look over, however, when they occur frequently or with increased intensity, they could become sources of stress for you.

How You Can Manage Physical Stress

There’s no way to avoid stress but you can manage its symptoms on your physical health by practicing some strategies that will help you maintain not just a healthy body but your mind as well.

Exercising, eating healthily, getting enough sleep, relaxing and other healthy living practices go a long way to help with the signs of physical stress.

Check out 10 Amazing Ways that Will Help You Relieve Stress Naturally.


While stress is natural and normal, when its intensity increases or duration is extended, physical and mental symptoms develop.

The physical symptoms of stress ultimately affect our health negatively, increasing our risk of diseases and reducing our quality of life. Nonetheless, some natural consistent practices can help manage the physical symptoms of stress.


How is physical stress diagnosed?

Most healthcare providers make use of questionnaires to understand the stress an individual is experiencing and how it affects their life. This is because stress is subjective, it is not measurable with tests, and only the person experiencing it can tell how it feels.

Healthcare providers evaluate physical symptoms that are related to stress such as high blood pressure and provide the appropriate care.

What happens to the body during physical stress?

Stress comes as a response to challenges or changes you experience. During Stress a chemical reaction occurs which is known as the Fight or Flight Response, this response triggers your autonomic nervous system which controls your heart rate, breathing, vision changes, and more. This response is also responsible for the signs of physical stress as listed above.

What are the effects of stress on our mental health?

Stress affects all areas of our lives, physical and mental. Stress affects the way we think (cognition) and the way we act (behavior). Common symptoms are; feelings of helplessness, inability to focus, loss of appetite and interest in activities once enjoyed, mental exhaustion, and constant worrying among others.

How do I avoid stress?

Stress is part of our lives, it cannot be prevented. However, they are daily life practices that help manage both physical and mental symptoms of stress.

Relaxing, exercising, maintaining a healthy diet, having enough sleep and rest, being positive and realistic, accepting that you can’t control everything, acknowledging the good times, and reaching out to a mental health expert are ways to manage stress.

When is the right time to reach out to a mental health provider?

It is important to reach out to a mental health expert immediately if you feel overwhelmed. A Mental Health expert will help you manage physical and mental symptoms of stress and help you go through your experience. Mental health professionals also give advice and develop techniques that will best address your problem.

7 Ways to Help You Work More Effectively Remotely

7 Ways to Help You Work More Effectively Remotely

There are various tips for working from home effectively that can help you boost your productivity as an individual. With companies now embracing working from home policies, these tips can help you balance work and home.

The covid-19 pandemic forced offices to shut down physically and move to remote working options. However, remote working is gradually becoming the new norm as more institutions are giving workers options to work from home or resume physically.

If you are new to remote working, you might have noticed how you have had to change your routine at home to fit your work schedule. You would have to figure out when is convenient and where and also find a balance between work and personal life. Adapting to this new change will take time.

I have worked (and I am working) freelance which requires me to work from home.  Writing from my experience and the experience of my fellow freelancers, I share 7 tips on how to work remotely effectively.

How to Work Remotely Effectively

1. Have a Work Routine

Having a work routine and consistently sticking to it can help you work remotely effectively.

Plan a working structure with timing that guides what time you would want to work and what you intend to work on. Having this clear guideline can help you maintain a balance between work and home.

My work routine at home and when I am in school is very different. Since I have lectures during the day, I plan my outline at night. In the morning at 5, I’m up writing before I go to class.

Write your planned routine on a board or a sticky note, whichever works well for you. Chose whatever time is convenient for you. Write down the time and the task you want to work on and shut out distractions.

Tip: your phone is one of the big distractions when working remotely.

2. Shut Out Distraction That Can Hinder

Working from home means you’d have to deal with distractions that are not available in the office. Family, friends, and neighbours are some of the distractions you might face when working from home.

Shutting distractions around your working environment at home is another Tip for working from home effectively. How do you reduce distractions from home?

  • Set Boundaries: if you do not stay alone, you might need to let your family or roommate know what time you would need a quiet place to work effectively. For example, my roommate knows not to play music between 5:30am to 7:00am. At that time most people are yet to wake, hence less distraction.
  • Keep Your Phone in Meeting Mode: A big distraction while working from home is your phone. At work, you are used to the “professional” environment and you barely used your phone. At home, there is no one to monitor you. Keep your phone on vibration and do not make of the social media on your break time.

3. Have a Time for Break

Break time is probably the best time for people/ either at work or in school. If you can have a break at work, why can’t you have one at home.

Taking a break helps you to work remotely effectively. A 10-minute for every 30-minute break would do you good when working from home

Your brain is not a machine. Working for long hours straight without taking a break would harm you. You would become tired quietly and stress would set in.

During your break, you can do other things that do not concern work. My go-to break activity is getting food. For every 30-minutes I spend typing, I used the time to grab a snack or plate of food.

4. Create a Convenient Workspace

A Convenient workspace can help you work from home effectively. It gives you that “professional” feeling like you’re at work, except without the office walls.

An ideal workspace would include a table, a comfortable chair, and your working tools. Your laptop and working materials like books and pens would automatically take up the remaining space. Create your workspace in an environment you are comfortable in.

It is also important to get the right equipment to help boost your productivity. You wouldn’t want to have your laptop switching off when you’re on a video call. Ensure you have all the necessary equipment you’d need working in the right condition.

Also, a little bit of aesthetics can help you work better at home. A family picture or a piece of art on the wall surface can create a homely feeling.

5. Create Time for Outdoor Activities

I am so guilty of this. When I started freelancing, I’d be indoors most of the time just working. My life became a routine and eventually It affected my output. Thank God for my friends that drag me out forcefully.

When working remotely, it is very easy to get used to staying indoors. You do not have to wake up early in the morning to prepare for work. You can get too comfortable with staying indoors, your only touch of reality could be social media.

To work from home effectively, you need to set time aside for outdoor fun activities. Some of these include going to a park, grabbing lunch with friends or family, or like my favorite activity, attending a musical concert.

Having time to go outside and have fun will energize you, physically and mentally. It will also give your body a good stretch.

6. Keep in Touch with Your Colleagues

Various apps can help you connect with your fellow colleagues at work. Keeping in touch with your colleagues can help you work remotely effectively.

Apps like slack, google meet, discord is great way of connecting with your colleagues virtually. Staying indoors can make you “forget” who you work with. Because you’re not constantly in touch physically, you may lose touch with them.

Organizing a group video call can boost your productivity from home. It allows you to brainstorm ideas and smile.

7. Take Online Training Courses

To work from home effectively, you would need to be constant with new changes and advances in your field of occupation.

You can utilize YouTube, Coursera, or any free training programs that offer the choice knowledge you are looking for. This helps you become better in your output and adds to your development personally.


With many job positions seeking remote workers, these 6 tips on how to work remotely effectively would help you manage the balance between work and personal life while working from home.

A comfortable workspace is necessary for working from home. Make sure your work setup is convenient for you with access to a power supply and good aeration. Set a timetable that would guide how you work on tasks.

What does your dream workspace look like? Share your ideas with me in the comment section and I’d share mine!