There are two major types of stress: stress that’s beneficial and motivating, and stress that causes anxiety and even health problems.

“Stress is something that most of us live with, some are more able to deal with it than others. The stress in our lives is now so great that more and more people are making the deliberate decision to understand it better, and bring it under their personal control. We have realised that waiting for someone else to make things better for us is futile.

Such personal commitment is all the more important if you are suffering from chronic illness or disability that imposes additional stress on your life on top of the usual pressures of living.” (Jon Kabat Zinn)

Relaxation can help to relieve the symptoms of stress. It can help you calm down and take a step back from a stressful situation.

Although the cause of the anxiety won’t disappear, you will probably feel more able to deal with it once you’ve released the tension in your body and cleared your thoughts.

NHS Choices have information on Relaxation tips to relieve stress. This includes an excellent and informative video by Professor Cary Cooper which gives details of things you can do to relieve stress, and also information on professional help which is available.

All the relaxation techniques combine breathing more deeply with relaxing the muscles, and include information on “relaxed breathing” and “deep muscle relaxation”. The latter includes tips for the face, neck, shoulders, chest, arms, legs, wrists and hands.

If you are unable to deal with your stress you should speak to your GP or seek help from a counsellor.