Home   >  ZandaX Blogs   >  Development Blog   >  Stress Management Articles   > 
Which Situations Cause the Most Stress?

Which Situations Cause the Most Stress?

 
Reducing and controlling your stress
Research shows that certain events, and types of events, can cause stress. Here we look at he most likely causes, and how we respond.
 
Article author: Ronnie Peterson
      Written by Ronnie Peterson
       (5-minute read)
"Stress" is a word often bandied around without much thought—when our unreliable computer is really "stressing us out"—for example.

But rarely does a dodgy desktop cause any proper psychological damage. So what is stress, really?

Mind.org.uk describes it as a feeling of being overwhelmed. A sort of thick fogginess which can be hard to see past and might, eventually, impact our physical wellbeing. Stress comes about through pressures that we face in life and our reaction to those pressures.



So which situations are believed to place the most mental burden on us? The Holmes and Rahe Stress Scale—one of the more widely used stress measurement tools in the US—looks at various triggers, labelled Life Change Units (LCUs), and allocates a point score to each. Totting up the figures then allows the subject to give his or herself an overall stress rating, in the hope of nipping future health issues in the bud.

Want to Manage your Stress Better?


If you'd like to learn more about . . . . . , why not take a look at how we can help?

Reduce your stress for a happier life with our online courses.
RRP from $89 – limited time offer just $9.99



According to the Scale, the 43 most significant triggers in life are [1]:
  1. The death of spouse (100)
  2. Divorce (73)
  3. Marital separation (65)
  4. A jail term (63)
  5. The death of close family member (63)
  6. Personal injury or illness (53)
  7. Marriage (50)
  8. Losing your job (47)
  9. Marital reconciliation (45)
  10. Retirement (45)
  11. Change in health of family member (44)
  12. Pregnancy (40)
  13. Sexual difficulties (39)
  14. Gaining a new family member (39)
  15. Business readjustment (39)
  16. A change in financial state (38)
  17. The death of close friend (37)
  18. A change in career (36)
  19. Arguing more or less with a spouse (35)
  20. A large mortgage or loan (31)
  21. Foreclosure of mortgage or loan (30)
  22. A change in responsibilities at work (29)
  23. A son or daughter leaving home (29)
  24. Trouble with in-laws (29)
  25. Outstanding personal achievement (28)
  26. A spouse beginning or stopping work (26)
  27. Starting or leaving school/college (26)
  28. A change in living conditions (25)
  29. Changing personal habits – i.e. quitting smoking (24)
  30. Difficulties with a boss (23)
  31. A change in work hours or conditions (20)
  32. A change in residence (20)
  33. Changing school/college (20)
  34. Changing leisure activities (19)
  35. A change in church activities (19)
  36. A change in social activities (18)
  37. A moderate loan or mortgage (17)
  38. Disturbed sleeping habits (16)
  39. A change in number of family get-togethers (15)
  40. A change in eating habits (15)
  41. Planning or going on holiday (13)
  42. Christmas (12)
  43. Minor violations of the law (11)
What's interesting is that some of these would appear to be good things. Planning or going on holiday, as well as Christmas, should be good things in our lives, right?

Yet, despite being good things, they still cause stress!

A second really interesting thing to note is how some "groups" appear. For example, death appears on the list on multiple occasions, and has different scores, depending on who has died. Similarly, any kind of change appears many times.

This would indicate that often, it's not just about the nature of the event itself, but the type of the event, that can cause stress.

Now, while some individuals may find that their own personal impact by these factors is different to this list, as an average for all society, they do tend to be valid.

Holmes and Rahe were able to test their hypothesis on US submarine staff. Working in a contained environment for up to six months, with no capacity for external illnesses to hit some and not others, the submariners could be assessed to see who was ill over the period, and who had experienced which elements of the list within 24 months prior to departure. (Should you be interested in this, try reading Future Shock by Alvin Toffler. While some of his predictions have not come to pass, and some others were simply wrong, overall it is still a really interesting idea and book.)

A direct link was found, with those scoring higher numbers on the test being more ill throughout the term of their trip.

The direct conclusion? If you experience a high amount of stress, you are likely to get ill!

Now, nobody wants to get ill, right? So the answer to avoiding the potential illness as much as possible is to try and reduce the impact that stress has on you, and that comes down to our individual responses to the stress.

So what influences our stress response?

Let's look at some basic aspects here.
  • Perception of the situation: This might be linked with previous life experience which proved to be negative, or vice versa. Or we might just be more prone to thinking less optimistically about things, which makes it difficult to see the light at the end of the tunnel and leads to heightened feelings of anxiety.
  • Experience at dealing with stressful situations: If we've never encountered a circumstance before and we're not sure what to expect, we can't anticipate an end to it—and this takes its toll on our stress levels. If a patient has to undergo surgery, for example, and they've never had any kind of procedure before, they might feel stressed about the pain and healing time that follows.
  • Emotional resilience: Those who have a strong sense of self-control, hardiness and adaptability often find it easier to deal with stressful situations than those with low self esteem and a nervous nature. To someone less resilient even a relatively minor life incident can seem overwhelming.
  • Other pressure factors in our life at that time: Stress mounts when one tricky situation is accompanied by another—or several—e.g. losing your job whilst going through relationship troubles. Multiple stressors can seem difficult, even impossible, to overcome.
  • What kind of support network we have: We've all heard that a problem shared is a problem halved. But many people don't have a strong support network to turn to in times of stress and that inevitably leads to feelings of being unable to cope.

In Conclusion

Different events, and different types of events, cause us stress. Both good and bad. But just as important is how we respond to these events. While you can't do anything about the events that occur, you can do something about the way that you respond to them.

It's my guess that if you're reading this, you're feeling stressed out to some degree. Now's the time to take some action, and try head off any potential illnesses that could be down the road if you don't make any changes.

Want to Manage your Stress Better?


If you'd like to learn more about . . . . . , why not take a look at how we can help?

Reduce your stress for a happier life with our online courses.
RRP from $89 – limited time offer just $9.99


Sources:[1] https://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/newTCS_82.htm

More Articles on Stress Management

Incorporating Books into Your Everyday Routine
Incorporating Books into Your Everyday Routine
Kerry Watts
Author: Kerry Watts
About the article
Summary
In this article we examine how a love of books offers respite from daily pressures, excessive screen time and a great way to relieve stress.
[ close ]
Treating Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder in the Working Environment
Treating Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder in the Working Environment
Riley Mitchell
Author: Riley Mitchell
About the article
Summary
We examine the treatments, the statistics on PTSD and the cost of the condition for the individual and society.
[ close ]
How to Reduce Stress by Having Better Time Management
How to Reduce Stress by Having Better Time Management
Kerry Watts
Author: Kerry Watts
About the article
Summary
One certain way to reduce your stress is by learning to manage your time more efficiently. Here we look at how to do that and the benefits.
[ close ]
What Are You Doing About Stress?
What Are You Doing About Stress?
John B
Author: John B
About the article
Summary
People are suffering from stress in higher numbers than ever. Are you aware of what to look for in colleagues and yourself and how to recognise the symptoms?
[ close ]
Managing Stress - Is It Only Up to You?
Managing Stress - Is It Only Up to You?
John B
Author: John B
About the article
Summary
Are you or a loved one struggling to cope with stress and health problems? Read on to find out what you can do about it.
[ close ]
How Can I Manage My Stress at Work?
How Can I Manage My Stress at Work?
Jordan James
Author: Jordan James
About the article
Summary
Are you feeling stressed at work? Learn about what may be causing it and what you can do about it on the Activia blog.
[ close ]
6 Top Stress Busters That Will Revitalise Your Work
6 Top Stress Busters That Will Revitalise Your Work
Ashley Andrews
Author: Ashley Andrews
About the article
Summary
Learn 6 fantastic ways to start beating stress, and how being assertive at work, and managing your time, will remotivate you.
[ close ]
How to Reduce Stress by Improving Your Communication
How to Reduce Stress by Improving Your Communication
Kerry Watts
Author: Kerry Watts
About the article
Summary
Stress is a more serious problem than we often consider it to be. However, as this post will show, you can reduce it by improving your communication.
[ close ]
How to Reduce Your Stress by Improving Your Relationships
How to Reduce Your Stress by Improving Your Relationships
Riley Mitchell
Author: Riley Mitchell
About the article
Summary
If you constantly suffer from stress, it can be that your relationships are the cause. Here's how healthy relationships help to reduce stress.
[ close ]
How to Reduce Stress by Being More Assertive
How to Reduce Stress by Being More Assertive
Riley Mitchell
Author: Riley Mitchell
About the article
Summary
Being assertive is how you can both reduce stress and prevent stressful situations happening in the first place. Here we look at how that works.
[ close ]
How Stress Affects our Thinking Patterns
How Stress Affects our Thinking Patterns
Kerry Watts
Author: Kerry Watts
About the article
Summary
Prolonged stress has the ability to radically affect our thinking patterns, usually for the worse. This looks at how that can happen.
[ close ]
Is Yoga Scientifically Proven to Help Reduce Stress?
Is Yoga Scientifically Proven to Help Reduce Stress?
Kerry Watts
Author: Kerry Watts
About the article
Summary
Many people claim that yoga can have an impact on those suffering from stress. But is this backed up by science? This suggest it does.
[ close ]
 

Write for us on the ZandaX blog

We're always looking for guest contributors to increase the variety and diversity of what we present.
Click to see how you can write for us:
 

The ZandaX Personal Development blog categories

Click a panel to visit the main category pages for the blog
Time Management
Time Management
Communication
Communication
Relationships
Relationships
Assertiveness
Assertiveness
Anger Management
Anger Management
Stress Management
Stress Management
[ This category ]

ZandaX Blog Contents

Want to see them all? Click to view a full list of articles in our blogs.

zandax online courses logo
"ZandaX courses are such great value, and with the help and support they give, there's no better option in the market"
ZandaX LinkedIn logo
ZandaX YouTube logo
ZandaX FaceBook logo
 
All content © ZandaX 2024