Coping with Stress

Stress affects us all

What is Stress?

Stress: The body’s response to a situation that is perceived as challenging or threatening to the person’s well-being

Stress vs Stressors

Most people understand what stress is and when they feel it. Many people do not know what it is that is stressing them out. The difference between the two and how to recognize them is important.

  • Stress: Your body's response to stressful events:
    • What you feel…
    • Anxious, increased heart rate, sweating.
    • Stressor: A potential source of stress;
      • Situations, events…
      • Loss of job, financial woes, birth of a child

Positive vs Negative Stress

Most people associate stress with something negative or that stress itself is a negative reaction. Stress is a reaction that can be related to positive as well. Understanding the difference is important to know to handle that stress accordingly

  • Positive Stress: Stress associated with something good in your life
    • Planning a wedding.
    • Birth of a child.
    • Starting a new job.
    • Stress on muscles during exercise to elicit growth.
    • Negative Stress: Stress associated with something bad in your life:
      • Death of a family member or pet.
      • Losing your job.
      • Financial losses or debt.
      • Personal illness or illness of a loved one.

Internal vs External Stressors

Stress can result as a reaction to stressors that come from within (internal) or from the outside world (external). Understanding the difference can help you learn how to control some of those stressors and how you react to them.

  • External:
    • Birth of a child
    • Commuting to work
    • Career
    • Socio-economic insecurity
    • Internal:
      • Lack of sleep
      • Poor health
      • Procrastination
      • Pessimism

How Your Body Responds to Stress

What To Do?

  • Know your stressors.
  • Know how you plan to respond to them.
  • Reduce number of stressors at home or work.
  • Ask yourself:
    • Can the stressor be eliminated?
    • Can it be avoided?
    • Can I gain more control over the situation?
    • Can I control my reaction to it?
    • Who could I go to for advice about this problem?
  • Exercise is a natural stress reliever
    • Breathing exercises
    • Meditation
    • Tai Chi or Yoga
    • Take a Break!

Take your recovery time; make it a priority!