University of California
Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter
Ways to Avoid Stress
Many people always complain about being stressed, when you ask them why their stress they give you different answers from school to work to problems with family or friends. Stress is scientifically defined as the process by which we perceive and respond to certain events, that we appraise as threatening or challenging (Psychology eight edition 550). This means anything that is happening in a person’s life can lead to stress if it’s not handled correctly and becomes a problem. Even though many people know their stressed they don’t know how to deal with it, this leads to many problems for people.
Stress is caused by many things that occur daily in each person’s life, one major cause of stress is fear. Each fear message produces an associated stress response. Even though we may not feel the effects of a stress response reaction, one still occurs. Meaning the body always produces an associated stress response to each fear and one that is directly proportional to the level of fear (anxiety Centre, stress fear). Another major cause of stress in most people’s lives is their work or school. Many students now face a lot of stress in schools because of the high level of competition to get into college etc.
Some stress can be good, for example it can motivate them to try harder to get good grades while too much of it can majorly hurt students. Many students feel a certain level of pressure due to the expectations of their teachers and family. They want to please everyone, and do their best so as not to let anyone down (examrare why do students have exam stress). This sort of pressure students feel can lead them to often overthink things and cause unnecessary stress. Another group of people that feels stress daily are people that work in a very competitive working environment.
Just like students at school adults that work also can feel a lot of stress from their jobs. This amount of stress especially increases if they don’t feel like their job is secure. Many of the most stressful events are related to the workplace: firings, business readjustments, changes in financial status, altered responsibilities, a switch to a different line of work, trouble with the boss, variations in work hours or conditions, retirement and vacations. Surprisingly, stress is not always a bad thing. It can stimulate creativity and productivity.
According to Robert Ostermann, professor of psychology at FDU’s Teaneck-Hackensack Campus, “No one reaches peak performance without being stressed, whether an athlete, an office worker or a manager. ” The natural pattern of human behavior is to experience a stress-causing event or situation, react to it with increased tension and then return to a normal, relaxed state. The problem occurs when stress is so overwhelming or constant that this pattern is broken (Rebecca Maxon fdu. edu). A final major source of stress is change.
Change causes many people to become stressed because they’re not use to a particular thing that makes them feel comfortable or in control. Significant changes whether positive or negative can be major sources of stress at any stage of life. Major changes such as a job loss or promotion, pregnancy, the death of a spouse or family member, sudden illness, injury, relocation, marriage, divorce, the departure of a child to college or other important events can force you to adapt to new and potentially uncomfortable situations, often leading to stress.
Because each person reacts differently to change, whether or not these events trigger stress depends largely on an individual’s coping strategies and personality. (Livestrong. com Denise Minger). Although many people ignore stress and try to live their lives without coping with it, it comes with very big consequences. Stress can cause both physical and mental problems that don’t deal with it. Mentally over stress people get affected heavily. The consequences of stress to one’s mental health range from nervousness to lack of concentration, to drug abuse to the extreme case of depression.
Stress can also have extreme strains on a person’s physical body. This ranges from having headaches, to eating poorly and also sleeping poorly. Studies show that stress can weaken a person’s immune system (psychology eight edition 560). This all leads to the major point of this paper which is how to cope with stress. Many people have different ways of coping with their daily stress which they learn from others or just by doing activities they enjoy doing. This includes playing a sport.
Even though playing a competitive sport can stress a person out, playing a sport for fun can also be a way to relief stress for many people. Pumping up a sweat releases mood-boosting hormones inside the brain called endorphins that swirl through your system and generate a buoyant feeling (Bonnie Swain schindly livestrong. com). Participating in noncompetitive sport activities also helps relief stress by taking a person’s mind away from the thing that is stressing them by doing so they completely stop thinking about the stressful thing occurring in their life.
Another thing people use that is related to sports to relief stress is exercise. Studies show exercise dramatically improves people’s moods and also their physical health which significantly reduces stress (psychology eighth edition 568). There are also many ways people can socially deal with stress. Studies show by surrounding one’s self with positive, people that have a positive outlook on life a person can better deal with stress. By surrounding themselves with such positive people the person also becomes an optimistic person instead of pessimist with a negative look at the world.
By being an optimist a person they gain better moods and a stronger immune system, they also respond to stress with smaller increases in blood pressure to stressful situations (psychology eighth edition 564). People who also have a positive outlook on life are found to live longer than people with a pessimistic look at life. Studies also show that people that surround themselves with people they love like family and friends deal with stress much better in general than people that are lonelier and have less loved ones around.
Compared with those with those having few social ties, people are less likely to die prematurely if supported by close relationships with friends, family, fellow workers, members of a faith community, or other support groups (565). Another widely use method of relieving stress is meditation and relaxation. When two groups of heart attack survivors were told to use relaxation methods and overall do relaxing things the amount of heart attacks they had compared to the other group that didn’t use the method was two times less (569-570). Meditation has also shown to lower stress on people by lowering their blood pressure.
Even though there are many natural safe non harming ways to relief stress there are many people that try to relief stress by doing things that are very harmful to themselves. This includes drug abuse. There are many drugs sold that are supposed to help people with stress and anxiety. Even though most people use this the right way to help them deal with their stress there are many others that get addicted to such drugs. Addiction to such drugs can lead to many health problems including death. Another negative way people relief violence is through the use of violence. There are many people that use violence to channel out their stress.
Some people don’t have as much control as others so they will be more susceptible to using violence because of stress. Overall everyone deals with stress because stress is in everyone’s daily activity. There are many different consequences to not dealing with one’s stress. But there are also many proven ways to deal with a person’s stress and problems. Most people already have a certain way of dealing with their stress through talking to family friends or playing a sport, or other things. There are also a lot of people that don’t know how to deal with their stress which can lead to many dangerous situations happening.