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Stress Management

WHAT IS STRESS?

Stress is your mind and bodys response or reaction to a real or imagined threat, event or change The threat, event or change are commonly called stressors. Stressors can be internal (thoughts, beliefs, attitudes) or external (loss, tragedy, change).

Stressors

Intrapersonal stress agent Role conflict Role overload Ethical issues Career roadblock Inter-personal stress agents Relationship with others Communication Conflicts Group processes

Job-related stress agents Inherent nature of job Travel Transfer Time pressure Organizational stress agents Physical environment (heat, light, noise) Resource limitation No career planning

Is All Stress Bad?

Moderate levels of stress may actually improve performance and efficiency


Too little stress may result in boredom

Too much stress may cause an unproductive anxiety level

LEVELS OF STRESS

EUSTRESS
Eustress or positive stress occurs when your level of stress is high enough to motivate you to move into action to get things accomplished.

DISTRESS
Distress or negative stress occurs when your level of stress is either too high or too low and your body and/or mind begin to respond negatively to the stressors.

Stress and Performance:


Inverted-U Hypothesis:

STAGES OF STRESS

ALARM STAGE
As you begin to experience a stressful event or perceive something to be stressful psychological changes occur in your body. This experience or perception disrupts your bodys normal balance and immediately your body begins to respond to the stressor(s) as effectively as possible.

EXAMPLES

Cardiac - increased heart rate Respiratory - increased respiration Skin - decreased temperature Hormonal - increased stimulation of adrenal genes which produce an adrenal rush.

RESISTANCE STAGE
During this stage your body tries to cope or adapt to the stressors by beginning a process of repairing any damage the stressor has caused. Your friends, family or co-workers may notice changes in you, before you do so it is important to examine their feedback to make sure you do not reach overload.

EXAMPLES

Behavior indicators include: lack of enthusiasm for family, school, work or life in general, withdrawal, change in eating habits, insomnia, hypersomnia, anger, fatigue. Cognitive Indicators include: poor problem solving, confusion, nightmares, hypervigilance.

RESISTANCE STAGE MORE EXAMPLES


Emotional indicators include: tearfulness fear anxiety panic guilt agitation depression overwhelmed.

EXHAUSTION STAGE
During this stage the stressor is not being managed effectively and the body and mind are not able to repair the damage.

Negative Effects of Stress


1. Physical Weight gain/loss Unexpected hair loss Heart palpitations High blood pressure 2. Emotional Mood swings Anxiety Can lead to depression Can also lead to unhealthy coping strategies (i.e. alcohol, drugs, etc)

Exercise

Stress Management Tips


Individual Approaches: Making little changes in your life can really add up to a big feeling of relief. Learn to recognize when you are feeling stressed and simple ways you can relax. Take a break. Have a cold drink, get some fresh air, or close your eyes for a minute to refocus. Stay positive to help friends and family cope with stress. Let others know you're feeling overwhelmed and tell them how they can help.

Stress Management Tips


Be prepared for unexpected problems such as traffic, a lost pet or a family emergency. Write down feelings of sadness, frustration or anger to get a clearer perspective of your emotions. Enjoy life's simple pleasures like colorful flowers, dancing, music, and social outings, etc. Share your talents to better the lives of others as well as your sense of well-being. Allow yourself to simply say "no" to friends and family when you know you cannot meet their demands without becoming overwhelmed.

Stress Management Tips

Exercise regularly. Have healthy eating habits never skip breakfast Reduce sedentary activities like TV Video games etc. Eat healthy nutritious food. Avoid Junk food Avoid excess caffeine intake eg. Tea, coffee, chocolates and cola drinks

Stress Management Tips


Practice time management Learn relaxation exercises. Rehearse and practice situations. Learn practical coping skills. Decrease negative self talk. Learn to feel good with a workable result Dont be a perfectionist. Build a network of friends.

Stress Management Tips


Organizational Approaches: Goal Setting Redesigning jobs Increasing employee involvement Recreational facilities for employees Career counselling

Benefits of Stress Management

Physical health gets better -more energy and stamina Emotions stabilized -positive attitude -hopeful/happier Ability to focus improved -able to learn and achieve

The Key Word Is.

Balance