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What are the Behavioral Symptoms of long-term Stress? Stress responses and 3 tips that help

Updated: Feb 13, 2023

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What are the behavioral symptoms of long-term stress? Main 3 ways to prevent long-term stress


The body's natural response to change is stress, which causes physical, emotional, and intellectual reactions. Therefore, an extremely important aspect is the identification of stress responses in their early stages so that it does not turn into long-term stress.

But if you haven't had a chance to seek help before and are under chronic stress, then reading this article is a great place to start. Training in stress management might make it easier for you to adapt to change healthily and reduce chronic stress in your life.

1. What is long-term stress?

Stress and stress responses can sometimes be advantageous. Our bodies release adrenaline, which aids us in finishing tasks and projects and may even improve our performance and capacity for problem-solving. Likewise, your body adjusts to new surroundings with the aid of stress reactions.

Stress can help us stay awake, motivated, and prepared to avert danger. But when anxieties persist without relief or rest periods, anxiety becomes an issue, thereby growing into long-term stress.

According to research, stress can have a role in the onset of serious conditions like heart disease, depression, and obesity. Long-term stress has detrimental effects.

However, a lot of people who endure long-term stress do not alter their lifestyles in a way that would minimize stress and ultimately prevent health issues, thereby aggravating the situation and increasing behavioral symptoms.

It can be challenging to change one's lifestyle in ways that are explicitly linked to long-term stress-related behaviors or symptoms, such as giving up smoking, adopting a healthier diet, obtaining more sleep, or lowering stress in general.

2. Behavioral symptoms of long-term stress

Negative behavioral symptoms due to long-term stress manifest themselves differently in all people. Reactions, behavior, and symptoms depend on many factors, such as upbringing, outlook, environment, etc.

One of the most common manifestations of long-term stress is chronic fatigue syndrome, which is characterized by the following symptoms:

  • Sleep disturbances

  • Frequent headaches and rapid fatigue

  • Frequent desire to be alone

  • Inability to control emotions, violent outbursts of anger, tearfulness, or, conversely, apathy.

Depression with the following symptoms can also be added to the symptoms of long-term stress:

  • Loss of vivid interest in life. At such moments, people stop enjoying even those activities that used to be their favorites, and hobbies disappear.

  • In some people, the stress response may be procrastination. In this case, it becomes difficult to start work even if the essence of the matter is clear.

  • Constant feeling of tiredness that appears already at the moment of awakening, feeling as if you never had a rest also refers to negative symptoms within the framework of long-term stress.

  • The appetite also changes against the background of chronic stress: some people cannot eat at all, and others intensively "eat" unpleasant emotions. In addition, addiction to unhealthy ways of relieving stress (alcohol, smoking) appears, which also does not add to health.

Because of all the negative behavioral symptoms which were described, cognitive functions naturally deteriorate the ability to perceive and process information.

3. How to prevent long-term stress: 3 major tips

Long-term stress is different for everyone. Some people may have it in a more sedate form, while others suffer from stress responses on a permanent basis.

If you are experiencing negative behavioral symptoms due to long-term stress, then be sure to read these three important tips on how to cope with this condition:

a. Set boundaries

Make a list of all the tasks and obligations that are stressing you out, adding to your sense of overload and provoking stress responses. I call this the do and endure list. Decide which chores you feel you should complete and reduce your time spent on anything not necessary.

Discuss a list of your duties for work-related projects with your manager to get their opinion on priorities and the best way to approach the tasks at hand.

Consider getting in touch with the people you've made commitments to and informing them that you are unable to fulfill these commitments at this time due to behavioral symptoms for social or non-work-related duties, such as community or volunteer activities.

It is imperative to understand how much of your life you are Enduring vs Doing. Having a better concept of this on a day-to-day basis can lead to making small but impactful changes in your life and, therefore, reducing long-term stress.

b. Make one commitment to your health

Do what you can to improve your health and lessen stress responses so that you will have the vigor and stamina to face the issues you are up against. Reducing your caffeine intake, for example, can have a favorable behavioral symptoms impact.

According to studies, those who abstained from caffeine felt less anxious or nervous, more at ease, and had a better sleep, more vitality, and fewer muscle aches.

Similar to this, a brisk walk or another cardiovascular exercise will improve your energy and focus levels while lowering your stress responses and anxiety levels. Take walks during sunrise and sunset for the added bonus of UV absorption and vitamin D.

A type of neurotransmitter in the brain called endorphins is produced by your body when you exercise, whereas the production of chemicals linked to chronic stress declines.

Taking proactive measures to improve your health will aid in stress management and the reduction of negative behavioral symptoms.

c. Improve your quality of sleep

Long-term stressed individuals frequently experience poor sleep quality and, in rare instances, sleeplessness brought on by stress. It is crucial to take action to improve the quality of your sleep because doing so will help you reduce stress responses.

Experts advise setting a regular bedtime, aiming for at least 7-8 hours of sleep, and, if at all feasible, removing distractions from your bedrooms, such as television and computers.

Start relaxing an hour or two before bedtime by doing things like listening to soothing music, reading a good book, having a relaxing bath, or practicing relaxation methods like Swami and meditation.

Write down your worries well before going to sleep if you tend to worry while lying in bed, and then try to stop thinking about them just before going to sleep.

After a restful night's sleep, you can decide how to deal with long-term stress in the morning.


It's normal and common to experience stress. However, long-term stress can result in physical, emotional, and negative behavioral problems.

Try a few easy stress relief and management tactics described in this article.

However, if you are feeling overburdened, sign up for a free discovery call, and we can work to restore your mental health.

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