Trauma is an emotional response to a terrible event. Living with trauma can affect you well after a traumatic event or experience, and can play a big part in how you move forward in life. Trauma also isn’t something that only people who’ve been diagnosed with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) can have. There are certain signs and behaviors that are common in most people with trauma, and when made aware of them, can help you determine what kind of trauma you have, and how it’s affecting your life.
Want to learn more about trauma? Check out our video on the signs of psychological trauma:
Writer: Maryann Opida
Script Editor: Isadora Ho
Script Manager: Kelly Soong
VO: Amanda Silvera
Animator: Rina C.
YouTube Manager: Cindy Cheong
Anger and Trauma, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, 17 Oct. 2019, www.ptsd.va.gov/understand/related/anger.asp
Avoidance, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, 9 Mar. 2021, www.ptsd.va.gov/understand/what/avoidance.asp
“How to Manage Trauma.” National Council for Mental Wellbeing, National Council for Mental Wellbeing, www.thenationalcouncil.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/05/Trauma-infographic.pdf?daf=375ateTbd56.
Mayo Clinic. “Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).” Mayo Clinic, Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research, 6 July 2018, www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/post-traumatic-stress-disorder/symptoms-causes/syc-20355967.
Public Education Committee of the International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies, editor. Trauma and Relationships, International Studies for Traumatic Stress Studies, 2016, istss.org/ISTSS_Main/media/Documents/ISTSS_TraumaAndRelationships_FNL.pdf
The Depression Project [@realdepressionproject]. Signs You’re Living With Trauma. Instagram, 6 March, 2021, www.instagram.com/p/CME175Vlwfe/?utm_source=ig_web_copy_link
“Trauma and Shock.” American Psychological Association, American Psychological Association, www.apa.org/topics/trauma.
Psych2go aims to make psychology and mental health content accessible for everyone around the world free of charge. Sponsors like Endel helps make this possible because we get to reinvest the funds to create more amazing content for everyone, while at the same time sharing companies that are working towards a similar mission.
Is Stress Running Your Life? Try The Following Tips
Everyone experiences stressful situations. Your body reacts to mild stress by increasing adrenaline, which makes you feel more alert and able to tackle problems. However, prolonged stress is very hard on the human body, it can cause you to experience a range of symptoms that including high blood pressure, headaches and nausea. Learning how to cope with stress is essential to your health and well-being.
Is your stress level high? Go for a scenic ride! This will help keep your stress level down. Going for a scenic ride is a great way to unwind and to just enjoy nature. Feel the breeze on your face, enjoy the sunshine and see the clear blue sky. See the world while also keeping your stress levels down!
Monitor your stress. Stress that becomes excessive to the point where it takes a toll on your daily life can frequently lead to depression. To avoid getting to this point, try to eliminate as much stress from your life as possible. Learn to say ‘no’ to others, and be sure to surround yourself with positive people and things. Try to use humor as a coping skill, as research indicates that this helps to reduce stress.
Avoid stress when possible! High blood pressure can be the direct result of too much stress in our lives. It is, of course, natural to experience a short-term spike in blood pressure under stressful situations. Think, for example, about a typical trip to the doctor’s office. Many people experience such as spike under such conditions. Long term elevation in blood pressure due to stress, however, is considerably more concerning!
One way to ensure that you are able to deal with stress in your life is to make sure that you get enough sleep. Without the proper amount of sleep, your body and mind are not fully able to recover and you will not be in the best shape for making decisions and dealing with possible stress causing situations.
When you are dealing with a person who has high levels of stress you should know when to avoid them. While the problem is their’s and not your’s, there is also no reason to make things even more difficult. Tell the person that you will resume the conversation at a later point.
Try giving a friend a call when you’re feeling stressed out. Even if you don’t talk about what’s bothering you, just chatting with a friend for a little while can really relax you. It can rejuvenate you and give you the energy you need to tackle your problems with a clear head.
Don’t sweat the small stuff. Learn to appreciate what things are worth stressing out over and what things are better to let go. There are so many things that you can’t control. If you have no control over what is going to happen, or the outcome, then there is no point in stressing out about it.
Use this journal to write down all the amusing things you see and experience in your life. Journaling can be quite fun, and writing down the event will help your mind to remember them. Writing about fun things can help your life to be more fun.
If you are in a relationship, go out for a romantic, candlelit dinner with the person that you love. You can just focus on your loved one and the time you have with them, rather than worrying about your problems.
A great way to deal with your stress is to get regular exercise. Try jogging, biking or swimming three to five days a week for about thirty minutes. In response to exercise, your brain releases endorphins, which help lift your mood and reduce your stress. Not only will you feel better, but you will get in better shape.
Next time you feel stressed and want to give up, do the opposite. Fighting through stress by being proactive, is an important step to controlling the situation. When you are passive about the the situation, you can easily develop a growing level of helplessness, which will only add more stress to your plate. Get in front of the situation.
If you feel stressed and irritable in the morning, try waking up 15 minutes earlier. It may seem counter intuitive to deprive yourself of sleep, but this will allow you to have a nice breakfast and to feel less rushed as you head out the door. Getting up earlier may also help you avoid stress inducing traffic.
If in any way possible, take a short nap during the day when you are feeling stressed. If your body is exhausted, you are sure to feel more susceptible to stress. During sleep, your conscious mind will rest and your unconscious mind can find the solutions to the situations that are causing the stress.
Stay focused on one thing at a time. Focus your mind on only one goal to be accomplished at once. Large projects are more stressful because there are more decisions to make. If you can break that one large project down into little projects and focus on them individually you will be able to tackle the task at hand with less stress.
Stress is a sign that you have gone off track in your life in one way or another and you need to adjust your behavior and your actions to equalize your feelings. If your mind cannot decide what it should be working towards, it causes you to feel stressed out.
A good tip that can help you keep your stress in check, is to remind yourself that other people have gone what you’ve gone through. Whatever difficult situation you’re in, there’s always someone who has gone through it and persevered. Telling yourself this, can be a great way to keep your stress down.
Prolonged stress can effect every area of your life including your health and relationships. Dealing with stress in a healthy way enables you to feel empowered and in control. It will also help you improve close relationships and reduce the long term effects that it can have on your body.