9 Overlooked Signs Of Stress – Can You Recognise Yourself In Any?

9 overlooked signs of stress

Although we are all different, there are especially 9 stress triggers that are often seen but do not get enough attention.

We are all different when it comes to what triggers stress in us. We all have fear within us, and fear creates resistance within us. This resistance quickly turns into stress if not handled properly. It is rarely the amount of work assignments or lack of time that stresses us out. That is the narrative we attribute to the situation. We fear ending up in a certain way of being when there is limited time or resources. 

9 basic types of fear

There are nine basic types of fear, and if you want to avoid stress, it’s important that you know what is triggering you the most 

  • What’s your stress trigger?

The fear of not being perfect

You have a longing to truly deliver 100 % in everything you do – the perfect mom, the best partner, the most excellent at work. You seek the utmost, and if someone deprives you of that opportunity, if e.g. your boss asks for a task ahead of time, you feel your stress. Giving your very best at all times is completely unrealistic, but you will be disappointed in yourself every time you are not perfect, and lie in your bed in the evening and hit yourself in the head with the things that did not live up to your desire for perfection.

Fear of restlessness 

You are stressed by conflicts, unrest, noise – also in a figurative sense. You need to withdraw and have peace, and if you do not get the opportunity to do so, it triggers stress. You seek harmony but do not get it, and it gives a feeling of being invaded, that your boundaries are being exceeded. You feel like shouting “I can not handle it anymore!”.

The fear of being controlled

Having others make decisions for and decide over you triggers your stress. It can be extremely small things. Eg. that someone has taken your desk so you have to move space. You seek self-determination, so it is not the concrete thing or situation, but the feeling of incapacity and being the weak party, because you have not been consulted, even if it has an impact on you.

The fear that others do not like you

You are very concerned that others like you and that they see you as the good colleague, the loving friend, partner, the sweet daughter-in-law/niece/aunt. You constantly do things for others to make them like you, but in the long run, you will be disappointed that others do not see your great efforts and you feel unloved. You seek to be perceived as a loving human being and you have forgotten that it is not real to be loving all the time. It’s less stressful to be yourself.

The fear of being worthless

Your stress is triggered by the feeling of being a failure and not delivering enough. You are a type of person who makes lists: Have I delivered enough in quantity? 

You lie in your bed in the evening and do not think about the 36 things you achieved, but about the 2 you did not achieve. You are looking for applause and recognition and are therefore preoccupied with quantity: “Look, I have delivered a lot!”. You are afraid to take time off because then you will not deliver. Therefore, the worst, e.g. a boss can do to you, is to ask you to take a few days off and rest – because then you do not deliver anything.

The fear of feeling stupid

Risking to say something stupid and be someone to laugh at, feels very risky to you. You dare not throw some, perhaps good, ideas on the table e.g. in work contexts, for your stress is triggered just by the thought of saying something stupid. You seek to be competent and therefore would rather be and stay in what you know you are good at because new challenges mean you will potentially feel stupid.

The fear of standing alone

It triggers your stress to be outside the community – it can be in opinions, to live alone, to quit your job. You would rather be in something that does not feel good because you feel too stressed to stand alone. Worrying about what do others think about your loneliness – that no one bothers to be with you? You want to create alliances and thus ensure you are part of a community. Just the thought of going to the cinema or restaurant alone will trigger your stress.

The fear of boredom

You get stressed out from getting bored, and if your phone broke and you had to do without, you would stress over everything you would miss out on. You want to be entertained and you dread going to the cottage for the weekend where there is nothing but tranquillity. You may also complain at work about a task that you think sounds boring or that you think the people you have to solve it with are boring. If you get a slavish plan for how your work tasks should be solved over the next month, you will feel your stress promptly.

The fear of not being special

“Just” being one in the crowd stresses you out and gives you the feeling of being indifferent. You need to have a significant meaning by virtue of being 100 % yourself: You do not just want to be just a colleague at work, just any player for a handball team, just any employee for a company, or an insignificant one in the circle of friends – you seek to be the unique employee with special abilities, the insightful on the team, the girlfriend one can be authentic to. Your stress is triggered if you do not feel the need for you specifically,  because you can deliver something that no one else can deliver, namely authenticity.

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