Stress and Stress Management Research Paper essay example
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Stress and Stress Management Research Paper

Stress and Stress Management

Stress has become a major era that is affecting our everyday life. This situation comes about normally when the body is rising to a challenge or facing some difficulties. In this paper we intend to look at the bad and good stress and analyze them critically. The paper also intends to look at the evolution of stress and how it has affected people since its discovery. This will help the readers to get a clear concept of what stress is, what causes it and how we can prevent and reduce the stress. The paper will also analyze on the various stress symptoms that we should look at in order to detect the stress and ways of preventing stress in our life. Accepting the world as it is will help us avoid stress and we therefore intend to look at the strategies used to prevent stress. The paper will also look at the good and the bad stress. Generally most people are aware of the bad stress. This paper will also look at stress in a positive way and show how it helps individuals achieve successful goals in life since it triggers working harder instead of letting stress tear us apart.

Stress Evolution

Stress is said to exist throughout man’s evolution. Homo sapiens had to win the survival game with their proper coping styles and dominant gene. The test of survival is applicable to all the evolution steps and this survival concerned the idea of changing conditions which means coping with the stress. This stage of stress has been faced by men for thousands of trials and error. Men have been led to extraordinary invention of technology in order to cope with survival events and this technology all started with a sharpened stone. Viewing the point from microevolution, stress is a factor which is termed very powerful especially induction of it in transpositions since it leads to generation of new variations of genetics in various populations under environment conditions which are very stressful. The ethical remains that we can protect ourselves from stress follow through unto wards subjects on handling the situation of stress or work a condition of stress to our own advantage. The choice that we have is using the situations of stress to or advantage or becoming the slaves to the situations of stress.

What is Stress

Stress is a feeling that is normally created and developed during the times when humans react in particular events. At this point the body rises to a challenge and thus goes on to prepare encountering with a tough situation with strength, focus, heightened alertness and stamina. Stressors are known as the events that trigger or provoke stress and they are said to cover a number of situations including everything from absolute physical risk to making staging or taking a semester’s significant of your toughest focus. For the human body to respond to stressors, it activates the specific hormones and the nervous system. A signal is sent to the adrenal glands by the hypothalamus in order to influence the production of more cortisol and adrenaline hormones thus releasing them to the bloodstream.
The heart race is then speeded up by these hormones and also the metabolism, rate of breathing and blood pressure. In order to improve vision the pupils dilate while the blood vessels open more wide in order to let in more blood which flows in the groups of muscles and thus putting into alert our muscles. In the same process some of the stored glucose from the liver are released so as to increase the energy in the body and in order to cool the body sweat is produced. In order to handle the pressure all these physical changes are released by the body so as to prepare an individual to react immediately. This reaction is called stress response. When the body is working properly, the response augments the ability of a person to perform better under the pressure. However, the stress response can also lead to problems caused by overreactions or failure to reset properly.

Good Stress and Bad Stress

Stress response is also called flight response. During emergency situations, stress response can be dangerous. Some situations where it can be critical are in order to avoid an accident the driver slums the breaks or maybe sitting for the final exams. However, little of the stress can help an individual keep on his toes and be ready to rise and face the challenge. Through this the nervous system immediately goes back to its normal state and stands by so as to respond again when it will be needed. It is evident that stress does not happen all the time to immediate things but also to ongoing long term events such as a divorce, school and others. Low-level stress can be produced by long term situations of stress and this can be hard on individuals and last for a long time. However, the nervous system can sense this pressure which is normally continuous and thus keep on pumping out extra hormones of stress for a period of time. This can however wear out the reserves of the body and leave an individual feeling overwhelmed, the body system weak and other problems are also caused.

Stress Dynamics

In situations which are more challenging the brain prepares the body for action of defense (fight or flight) by releasing the stress hormones. The stress hormones then produce a defense action which is strong leading to them being used up in the blood stream and this leads to reduced anxiety symptoms and effects of stress. Failing to counter a situation of stress makes the chemicals and hormones to remain in the blood stream for a longer period of time. This results in physical symptoms of stress which include:

Rapid Heartbeat
Tens muscles
Unfocused anxiety
In everyday life, people face different types of stressors which if not released they will accumulate and can then bring harm to the body. If the stress accumulates in the body there is a risk of chronic and acute illnesses of psychosomatic which go on to weaken the immune system. Stress causes various problems to the human body including allergies, headaches, insomnia, asthma, irritable bowel syndrome, fatigue, heart ailments, ulcers and much more. According to Indian Psychologist Sanjay Churg, seventy percent to ninety percent of adults go to see physicians in relation to stress problems. It is clear that almost every person suffers from stress whether child, women, men and also fetuses. Some of the things causing stress include:

Demands of relationships
Pressure at workplace
Chronic health problems
Traffic Snarls
Tensions when growing up
Meeting deadlines and others
However, each person reacts to stress differently from the other. For some individuals, stress is known to provoke anxiety and feelings which in time intensifies and gets persistent. However, if the various individuals learn how to manage stress through understanding it effectively then we can prevent the effects of stress. There are various ways of coping with stress and the most important is change of lifestyle. Some of the effective methods of invading stress however include deep breathing, personal techniques of growth, physical exercises and massage and visualization.

Positive Stress

Positive and stress are two words which do not go together often. However, there are important instances when people rise to the stress challenge and achieve the unachievable. A good example includes the athletes, the scientists who stress themselves in order to bring out the best of the phenomenal world, a painter, composer and many more. According to psychologists, they believe that some situations of stress can help enhance the potential in us and become very helpful. The experts say that sometimes stress is necessary in our life but in moderate doses. The response of stress is referred as one of the best body defense systems against the inner and outer dangers. In risky or dangerous situations, the hormones of stress released from the body make us alert of any the danger and our senses increase the focus.
At that moment the body is ready to act with more speed and strength. Stress therefore helps us to have more concerned, sharp and ready for any action. Stress is known to increase an individual’s performance. Instead of sitting down and succumbing in stress, most people use it as impetus so as to achieve success. It helps the faculties of people by stimulating them and they go deeper and are able to discover their success in the long run. The brain becomes biochemically and emotionally sharp in its performance when an individual is under stress.

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Preventing and Managing Stress

Many people might think that they will never do anything in regards to their level of stress. This can be due to the fact that the family responsibility and career are always demanding, bills are ever coming, and there are never enough hours for one’s errands and much more. However, there is more control in us for our life than we may think. It only takes strength to realize that one is in control of his or her life and this becomes the foundation to managing the stress. Taking charge is the major activity in stress management and this includes taking charge of one’s schedule, emotions, environment, thoughts and ways of problem solving. The major goal is to balance one’s life in terms of relationships, time to work, fun, relaxation with the aim of holding up under pressures and facing challenges.
The first step towards managing stress is through identification of stress sources in an individual’s life. However, it is evident that this is not an easy task as it sounds since in most cases the sources of stress are not so obvious and thus making it easy to overlook the major stress points including feelings, thoughts and behaviors. In order to clearly identify the major areas of stress in an individual’s life it is good to clearly look at the attitudes, excuses and habits. There are major strategies used to manage stress and they are discussed below:
1. Avoiding unnecessary stress
In this life, we cannot avoid all the stress since it is also not right to avoid situations which require addressing. However, there are many things in this life that bring stress and we can easily do away with and some of them include:
Learning to be independent and making decisions on your own without any influence. An individual should learn to say no and discover his or her limits thus sticking to them whether into professional or personal life. This is because if an individual takes more than he or she can handle, then they are exposed to a surefire for stress.
Avoiding stressful people: If an individual causes stress to your life severally and the relationship cannot be turned around, it is better to limit the time spent with this person or do away with the relationship completely.
Taking control of the environment: A good example is if a programme in the TV makes you anxious then turns it off. This is a good way of avoiding stress. Some other things that we can do away with include avoiding topics which are hot-bottom and paring down an individual’s to do list.
2. Altering Situations
It is essential to alter a situation if it cannot be avoided. This will be essential especially if you figure out a way of changing things to prevent the problem recurring in the future. This strategy involves mostly changing the way people lead their daily life and communicate. Some of the changes include:
Expressing feelings instead of hiding: It is good to communicate feelings or concerns which are bothering you in an open way. If one does not there is a likelihood of resentment growing inside you and the situation will not change.
Willingness to compromise: Be willing to do something that you have requested from someone else. For example, if you expect a change of behavior from someone be willing to do the same. This shows that both parties will acquire a happy middle ground if they all have the willingness.
Assertiveness and proper time management: It is good to learn on how to deal with issues head on and avoiding taking backseat in your own life. A lot of stress is caused by poor management of time. Planning ahead without overextending alters the level of stress in one’s life.
3. Adapting to the Stressor
It is always good to change yourself if it is impossible to change the stressor. Adapting to situations of stress helps an individual regain his or her sense of control through changing one’s attitude and expectations. Some of the stressors we can adapt to include:
Reframing problems: In order to prevent stress, it is advisable to look at them in a more positive perspective instead of fuming about small things.
Adjusting one’s standards: A major source of avoiding stress is perfectionism. People normally set themselves up due to failure by demanding perfection. It is essential to set standards which are reasonable for us and other people and learning to be okay will be good enough.
Focusing on the positive: It is advisable to reflect on things that we normally appreciate in our lives especially when the stress is getting us down. The best things we appreciate include the positive gifts and qualities. It is also very essential for people to adjust on their attitudes since this reduces stress. The way people think and what they think can highly have a profound emotional or physical effect in our well-being.
4. Accepting Things we cannot Change
There are sources of stress which are unavoidable. Some stressors such as serious illnesses, national recessions and death of loved ones can never be prevented. In such a situation, the best way of coping with such stress includes accepting the way things are. Though acceptance maybe difficult it is in the long run easier than railing over a situation which is not changeable. Therefore it is important:
Share Feelings: It is good to have an appointment with therapists or talk to trusted friends. It can be very cathartic to tell people what you are going through and also considered as a way of reducing tension. Despite the fact that there is nothing which can be done to alter a situation, it feels good to talk to someone who can be trusted and it is a good way of preventing stress.
Learning to Forgive: It is clear that we live in an imperfect world and the thing is to accept this fact most especially that people make mistakes. In order to prevent stress, letting go of resentment and anger is important since it is a way of freeing oneself from negative energy and moving on.
In conclusion Stress is a feeling that is normally created and developed during the times when humans react in particular events. It is clear that stress can lead to serious dangers in life especially for people who are suffering from certain diseases such as HIV/AIDS, terminal illnesses and others. In order to prevent these dangers it is essential to live positively and accept the world as it is. Being independent and forgiving is another way of preventing stress and moving on with life. In life it is clear that there is good stress and bad stress. Though in most cases stress is termed as bad, in other cases stress helps us work harder in achieving our goals and becoming more successful in life. Stress is a situation that can affect all including women, men, children and the rest.
Stress is caused by various factors such as relationships, work, meeting deadlines and others. There are stresses which are not avoidable and cannot be prevented and these include death and serious illnesses. Therefore, it is advisable that we should accept things as they are and avoid trying to change what is unchangeable. However, talking to people who can be trusted like a therapist and friends is very significant since it helps ease the burden and reduce stress. It is very clear that stress is manageable if we take control of our lives. It only takes strength to realize that one is in control of his or her life and this becomes the foundation to managing the stress. Taking charge is the major activity in stress management and this includes taking charge of one’s schedule, emotions, environment, thoughts and ways of problem solving.


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Jones, F., Bright, J., & Clow, A. (2001). Stress: myth, theory, and research. New Jersey: Prentice Hall.
Ricardo, C. (2007, May 3). Stress: Good vs. Bad. Retrieved April 20, 2012, from Therapist-Psychologist .com: http://www.therapist-psychologist.com/psychology_article/articles/stress-good-vs-bad.html
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