Stress Addiction: Understanding Cortisol's Impact.

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Are You Addicted To Stress? Everything You Should Know About Cortisol


By Team Muscletrail
06 March, 2024

We know it might sound completely insane to you! But you might be addicted to stress. Irrespective of how clueless you are about this, there are chances that you might feel addicted to stress, even though you yourself are aware of the harmful effects of stress! It’s not majorly you to blame when it comes to stress; even the negatives it possesses might raise a concern. 

Never heard of what stress addiction is? No worries, this article will help you understand in detail about stress addiction, the signs you need to look for, and coping strategies. 

What Exactly is Addiction to Stress

What is an addiction to nicotine? You seek nicotine wherever you go, and you feel uneasy if you don’t get access to it! Similarly, stress addiction can be defined as a repetitive pattern of seeking out situations that may lead to an increase in stress levels. Just like the adverse ef

want to know the worst part? There’s no clinical test or analysis available to detect stress addiction. So, if you are addicted to stress, even your doctor might not know it! 

You might be aware of the fact that when we stress out, our body releases a chemical called cortisol. It’s a glucocorticoid hormone produced majorly by your adrenal glands with the main goal of assisting your body in regulating the response to stress. Discussing some of the important roles of cortisol they are:

  • It slows down your body’s metabolism
  • Helps in regulating blood pressure and sugar 
  • Reduces inflammation 
  • Regulates your baby’s stress response
  • Got a sleep-wake cycle? It will help in bringing it under control.

Here’s a catch, our body releases dopamine along with cortisol, which is a feel-good chemical that encourages repeat behaviors. It does so by igniting the reward center in our brains.

Now, you know what addiction to stress means. Let’s have a look at the common signs of addiction to stress. 

  • You don’t like rest and relaxation 
  • You say ‘Yes to everything 
  • Checking your phone constantly

As we already told you, there is no way you would be able to find out whether you are addicted to stress. Even these common signs of stress can be misperceived as working in a toxic environment. Well, let’s discuss how does stress become addictive! 

Factors Contributing to Stress Becoming Addictive

Both cortisol and dopamine are hormones with direct relation to mood, and hence, they can influence it and make the person feel happy, which further results in him seeking stressful situations. People enjoy the feelings brought on by the elevation of cortisol and dopamine levels. 

Being an adult and growing up in an environment that is competitive, there are chances that you are comfortable in a stressful environment, and it’s kind of a normal situation for you. It’s not normal, though, but your mind makes peace with it, and if that environment is not even with you, you feel a sense of discomfort. 

With time, the stress becomes a high our mind craves, and when we are not stressed, we’ll feel stressed about it. Want to know what a stress addiction looks like? Maybe you could relate to a few points. 


Few Points to Know How Stress Addiction Looks Like 

Let’s keep an eye on the signs that suggest you might be dependent on the feelings you get from stress. 

  • You love drama, and you are always in search of situations that can bring some drama into your life. 
  • You engage yourself in behaviors that might be harmful to you or someone else or might result in consequences that are not ideal. 
  • If you are not in a stressful situation, you will feel bored. We bet you would have related it with some scenes by now. 
  • You seek out activities or actions that carry the potential to put you in a situation that is stressful. 
  • You don’t have enough time to take care of yourself, or you don’t want to spend time keeping yourself well.
  • You say yes to things you don’t actually want to say yes to, and then your regret why you didn’t say no. 
  • Physical stress, like experiencing back or neck pain.
  • You just can’t remember the last time you were not stressed.

Breaking Free From the Stress Cycle

If you are looking for a one-stop solution to stress addiction, it’s unfortunate that there is no cure for it. Oh, wait! Don’t lose hope just there! You can do some exercises and meditation to mark your first steps towards drawing yourself out from stress addiction. 

Some of the coping mechanisms that can be effective are:

  • Meditation
  • Deep breathing exercises to calm your mind 
  • Joining certain support groups
  • Imposing restrictions upon yourself to facilitate a well-balanced life
  • A regular self-care routine

There are certain therapies, too, that can help you change these behaviors. Experts in the field suggest psychotherapy for the same, such as DBT or CBT. 

The best thing you can do is figure out what triggers your bad stress. If you look deeper, you’ll be able to identify some issues. These could be majorly related to your diet, sleep, mood, and concentration. Look at your actions. Try to figure out what are the causes of stress. What do you do when you are stressed? What elevates your mood, and what makes you feel even worse? 

How Can Exercises Help You Combat Stress 

Exercise and especially the gym, take your mind off all the negativities going on around you. It allows you to bring your focus to one concentrated factor, and that is, getting fit. Physical fitness not only has physical benefits for your body, but it is beneficial for your mind too! Moreover, the gym is addictive too, and trust me; it’s better to get addicted to a physical activity that is actually progressive rather than being addicted to something that is not normal. 

If you are planning to head out to the gym and give your body and mind a sense of relaxation and achievement, then you have to add supplements to assist you in your journey. To get your hands on the best quality supplements, you need to visit the best online supplements store, Muscle Trail. 


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