When you go to bed feeling stressed you anticipate waking up feeling refreshed and renewed, but this isn’t always the case. Sometimes we wake up feeling worse. Too much stress leads to stress burnout. This feeling is sometimes known as a stress hangover.
Stress hangovers may occur after your body experiences an excess of stress hormones. When you’re stressed you experience a rise in hormone levels including cortisol and adrenaline, which produces that fight or flight response. When you’re stressed your body responds by seeking sugar. It may also cause your heart to race and forces you to concentrate. Too much stress it leads to an overabundance of these hormones, which can tire you out. You may feel unusually slow, restless and unable to sleep. This combination of stress and burnout is a stress hangover.
To relieve your stress hangover symptoms it’s important to remember: M.E.N.D. (“Massages,” Endorphins,” “iNteractions,” and reduced “Distractions”). Find more Mindful Heath information on stress burnout listed below.
- Massages. When you’re restless and unable to sleep consider getting a massage. The pressure and the motions of the massage can relax muscles, tendon, and ligaments. Massages can also reduce stress and anxiety during a stress hangover episode. Getting a massage from a professional at a spa is great, but it can be expensive. Also, consider buying a foot or back massager in order to relax more at home. Or ask a loved one for a massage.
- Endorphins. Exercising is one way you can boost your energy during a stress hangover episode. When you exercise your body releases endorphins that can lower your stress levels and increase your energy. So, when you’re stressed at night consider doing light stretches before bed. To reduce stress during the day try taking the stairs instead of the elevator or taking a walk on your lunch break.
- Interactions. When you’re feeling slow and sleepy from stress hangover the last thing you may feel like doing is socializing, but talking through your troubles can be helpful. Having close relationships and friendships can help with your mental health. Consider talking to someone you trust or sharing a laugh with a loved one.
- Distractions. Focusing on the worries that cause you to stress will only make your stress hangover worse. Instead, consider finding mindful distractions. Research shows that taking a mental break when you’re stuck on a stressful problem can help you find a solution and peace. Consider listening to music or taking up a craft project like drawing, knitting, or origami-making. Is your home a mess? Consider tidying up, it can help you feel better organized and clear-headed.