Are you feeling less and less able to manage the pressure at work and/or at home? Do you feel like you are on a treadmill with no possible end in sight? There's a lot in the media these days on how we can deal with stress. But for many people, life is so full of difficulty that it feels impossible to fit in that healthy walk in the countryside, that relaxation class or that meditation practice that is supposed to help. Such people can only improve things for themselves once they have discovered the psychological source of stress and what factors inhibit them from making changes. Here is a summary of my work with one highly-stressed client, who I will call 'Marina' (removing or changing any identifying details for the sake of confidentiality).
Marina came to me for psychotherapy when she had stopped wanting to go to work. She would go to the train station but find it too difficult to board the train that would take her to her workplace. When we explored what was stressful for her, Marina realised that it was due to relationship issues with her colleagues who would never accept her ideas. Since this sense of being rejected felt familiar to her, we looked at how rejection had come up previously in her life. It became clear that Marina's colleagues were reminding her of critical foster parents. In therapy, Marina worked through the painful childhood experiences and was able to let go of the negative affect it had on her feelings of self worth. When she was able to present her ideas more confidently at work, Marina found that those ideas were received well by her colleagues. Work became less stressful and we were then able to address the issue of work-life balance as well, so that Marina could develop outside interests that enable her to cope more easily with challenges as and when they come up at work.
If you need help to see why it is all too much to handle, then try psychotherapy.