How do you deal with stress?

14 May 2018

Mental Health Awareness Week 2018 (Monday 14- Sunday 20 May) will focus on stress and how we manage it. 

While occasional feelings of stress are natural, it can be easy to think that high levels of stress are a normal part of modern life. Many of us may not realise that prolonged feelings of stress can have a serious impact on both your physical and mental health.

When you’re overwhelmed by stress it may lead to mental health problems or make existing problems worse.

Recently there has been growing awareness of using arts and cultural activities to promote general well-being, including some aspects of mental health.

In Southwark throughout Mental Health Awareness Week, there are a number of events and services are available in our libraries:

  • Feel Better with a Book, a chance to relax, make friends and enjoy a fresh way to share reading – At East Street Library Tuesday 15 May, 2pm to 4pm
  • Books on Prescription’ is a year round service that enables high quality self help books to be prescribed by GPs and other health professionals. The books have been recommended by psychologists and counsellors and can be borrowed from any library in Southwark. If you feel that reading about your needs or problems may be helpful, ask your GP or health professional about Books on Prescription. 
  • Reading Well for Young People is another service that is available in our libraries. All of the books have been chosen by young people aged 13 to 18, and health experts. The list includes self-help books and fiction which contain advice and personal stories about dealing with feelings such as anxiety, depression or stress, and experiences such as bullying.

Cllr Richard Livingstone, Cabinet member for Adult Care and Financial Inclusion, said : “While everyone has felt stress at some point in their life, it’s important to recognise when stress gets out of control and impacts on your health and wellbeing. Mental Health Awareness Week is a good opportunity to look at how we all manage stress. Stress affects everybody differently and there are many different ways to deal with it depending on the individual. Asking for help when it comes to mental health isn’t easy, but it is important that we all recognise the signs when we aren’t coping.”

Stress can be difficult to avoid but there are ways to help manage stress better. Getting active can reduce some of the emotional intensity and help clear your mind, practicing mindfulness or using a relaxation app on your phone can all help manage stress. More advice on how to deal with stress is available via the NHS Choices website and if stress becomes difficult to manage yourself you can speak to your GP. 

Page last updated: 14 May 2018